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Tokyo University of Foreign Studies "History in the public sphere: Memory culture in Japan"



Course title

History in the public sphere: Memory culture in Japan


Taku Shinohara, Yoshiko Fujii


Spring semester



Overview of the Course

The course will give an overview of some of the most disputed historical topics in the public sphere, and examine basic concept of "public history" on the very concrete examples. For this purpose, this course will be supported by HIPS program, which lasts for a minimum of three years, and is offered throughout the spring semester each year. (HIPS:

Goals of the course

Students will be acquainted with some of the most disputed historical issue in the public sphere in Japan to get comparative perspective to each of their research target.


memory culture, Japanese history, history in the public sphere/p>

  • Great Kwanto Earthquake and the Tokyo raids: Commemoration of the disasters
  • The Center for the Tokyo Raids and War Damage: Virtual visit and a lecture by Prof. Hiroshi YOSHIDA, director of the center
  • Around Yasukuni: Yasukuni shrine, its history and place in contemporary memory politics
  • The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On (A documentary film by Kazuo HARA, 1987, 120min)
  • Discussion on The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On
  • "Nanjing Massacre" in the Japanese school textbooks and politics of history in Japan
  • History in Urban landscape 1. Lisbon (an introduction to NOVA)
  • History in Urban landscape 2. Florence (an introduction to UniFi)
  • Atomic Bomb in Japanese memory culture 1. A-bomb, preparation, damage and its aftermath in Hiroshima
  • Atomic bomb in Japanese memory culture 2. History of its commemoration
  • Comparison of representation and memory culture: Holocaust and the atomic bombs
  • Minamata 1
  • Minamata 2
  • Some specific characters in Japanese memory culture?
  • Visiting history museums in Tokyo
Grading system for assessment

final paper: 100%


Please review the lectures in comment sheet each time