Organized Panel Session
The first half of the twentieth century witnessed the development of transnational political and cultural movements in East Asia and beyond. Amid the turbulence of Imperial Japan’s colonial rule, intellectuals, nationalists, revolutionaries, and ethnic minority leaders utilized various types of media (periodicals, radio, television, film) to promote freedom of thought, liberation from traditional values, and independence from empires. This interdisciplinary panel brings together four perspectives on this phenomenon that pave the way for future research.
Noriko Unno-Yamazaki argues that Russian-Tatar Muslim collaborators with Japan who were yearning for independence from the Soviet Union tried to win over Chinese-speaking Muslims by propagating Pan-Asianism, Pan-Islamism, and anti-communism in Chinese Muslim periodicals established by the Japanese army in the early twentieth century. Cheng-chieh Chang demonstrates that Taiwanese students editing the magazine Formosa in early-1930s Tokyo in the midst of the Red Scare bridged Chinese left-wing writers and Japanese new drama writers/performers, which led to the birth of a hybrid Taiwanese literature. Nirmola Sharma shows how the Indian National Army in Japanese-occupied East and Southeast Asia, an army created and sustained by the Japanese regime, liberally used Japanese motifs and ideas to articulate the Indian liberation struggle. Seung-Mi Han examines the complexities of the transnational landscape represented by modern girls in Korea by juxtaposing 1930s portrayals of modern girls and other Japanese “collaborators” with postcolonial media depictions of them.
Together, these papers illuminate the role of media in forming and maintaining inter-Asian networks under Japanese occupation, on both local and global levels.