Today we talk about war and children in Japan. My guest is Sabine Frühstück, a Professor of Modern Japanese Cultural Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she also directs the East Asia Center.
She has published a new book called Playing War: Children and the Paradoxes of Modern Militarism in Japan. It is a cultural history of the naturalized connections between childhood and militarism.
In the book, Sabine analyzes the rules and regularities of war play, from the hills and along the rivers of 19th century rural Japan to the killing fields of 21st century cyberspace. It is a timely book that addresses the red-hot debates in Japan over its imperial past, its imposed pacifism, and its creeping militarization today.