होम Modern Asian Studies Between God and Man. By Junji Kinoshita. Translated, with an Introduction, by Eric J. Gangloff....

Between God and Man. By Junji Kinoshita. Translated, with an Introduction, by Eric J. Gangloff. University of Tokyo Press: Tokyo, 1979. Pp. 171. 2,000 yen.

यह पुस्तक आपको कितनी अच्छी लगी?
फ़ाइल की गुणवत्ता क्या है?
पुस्तक की गुणवत्ता का मूल्यांकन करने के लिए यह पुस्तक डाउनलोड करें
डाउनलोड की गई फ़ाइलों की गुणवत्ता क्या है?
खंड:
15
भाषा:
english
पत्रिका:
Modern Asian Studies
DOI:
10.1017/S0026749X00007113
Date:
April, 1981
फ़ाइल:
PDF, 347 KB
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आप पुस्तक समीक्षा लिख सकते हैं और अपना अनुभव साझा कर सकते हैं. पढ़ूी हुई पुस्तकों के बारे में आपकी राय जानने में अन्य पाठकों को दिलचस्पी होगी. भले ही आपको किताब पसंद हो या न हो, अगर आप इसके बारे में ईमानदारी से और विस्तार से बताएँगे, तो लोग अपने लिए नई रुचिकर पुस्तकें खोज पाएँगे.
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english
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Between God and Man. By Junji Kinoshita.
Translated, with an Introduction, by Eric J.
Gangloff. University of Tokyo Press: Tokyo,
1979. Pp. 171. 2,000 yen.
Kyozo Sato
Modern Asian Studies / Volume 15 / Issue 02 / April 1981, pp 342 - 344
DOI: 10.1017/S0026749X00007113, Published online: 28 November 2008

Link to this article: http://journals.cambridge.org/
abstract_S0026749X00007113
How to cite this article:
Kyozo Sato (1981). Modern Asian Studies, 15, pp 342-344 doi:10.1017/
S0026749X00007113
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REVIEWS

Between God and Man. ByJuNji KINOSHITA. Translated, with an Introduction, by E R I C J . G A N G L O F F . University of Tokyo Press: Tokyo, 1979.
Pp. 171. 2,000 yen.
This book is not a scholarly work, nor is it particularly concerned with the
historiographical facts of one particular time. It is a 'didactic' drama which
poses in front of us Japanese questions or doubts to be answered or cleared
away. The main theme of the book is the Pacific War and its end result: the
problem of war guilt and oblivion.
Junji Kinoshita (1914) is a leading Japanese dramatist whose Yuzuru
(published in 1949)1 won him fame and is still widely performed throughout
Japan. He is also a long-standing critic of social and political phenomena of
postwar Japan. In fact, his major concern has for some time been the problem
of Japan's responsibility for the last war which ended with her complete
surrender to the Allies in the summer of 1945. In 1974 and 1975 he wrote
such articles as 'Have We Already Done with the Problem of War Responsi-

bility? (senso sekinin no mondai wa mo owatta ka)', 'The Unatoned Past (miseisan
no kako)' and 'The Pain that Penetrates into Ourselves [mizukara 0 sasu itami;  0)'
in leading Japanese newspapers,2 and these titles alone are sufficient to indicate where his mind lies and what he wants to convey. It is this concern of his
that made him complete a play Between God and Man in 1970 (its publication
being in 1972) in such a manner as to give us Japanese so deep an impression
that we are obliged to reflect on the real implications of our war responsibility not just in general terms but rather on a personal and private level.
This is precisely the reason why Between God and Man, be it a fictional drama
or a presentation of Kinoshita's personal feelings, needs to be accorded due
consideration and read with a conscious mind.
The play itself is composed of seven acts in two parts. Part One centres
exclusively on the actual proceedings of the International Military Tribunal
for the Far East in Tokyo (1946-1948), commonly called the Tokyo Trial.
This trial, copied after the Nuremberg Trial, has raised much doubt among
historians concerning its origin and justifiability.3. In Part One Kinoshita
elaborately picks several specific episodes up out of the long-drawn-out trial
and copies them down as they were actually played in the courtroom. In this
way he succeeds in producing a dramatic effect that the whole nature of the
trial was fishy and phoney. The episodes he picks up are: on the question of
the jurisdiction of the court taken from the records of the proceedings of 4, 6,
13 and 17 May 1946 in Act One; on the authenticity of the evidence submitted by the prosecutor from 16 and 17 January 1947 in Act Two; and on
1

Yuzuru wasfirsttranslated into English as Twilight of a Crane by Takeshi Kurihara
and published from Miraisha in 1952.
2
Tokyo Shimbun, 9 January 1974, Tomiuri Shimbun and Tokyo Shimbun, 4 January
•975 (eveningeditions).
3
Among the books published on the Tokyo War Crimes Trial are Holis Horwitz,
'The Tokyo Trial', International Conciliation, November 1950, which considers the
trials justified; H. Minear, Victor's Justice: The Tokyo War Crimes Trial (Princeton,
N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1971), which takes an opposite view; more recent is
The Tokyo Judgment: The International Military Tribunal for the Far East, 29 April 194612 November 1948, eds B. V. A. Baling and C. F. Buter (Amsterdam, 1977).

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REVIEWS

343

the interpretation of the term 'war crime' from 3 and 5 March 1947 in Act
Three.
Part Two is distinctly different from the preceding part. While in Part One
Kinoshita is successfully attempting to create an atmosphere in which the
sterility of the Allies' judgement against 'war crimes' committed by the
Japanese is brought into relief through the formal and grooved conversations
between judges, prosecutors and defence, the general atmosphere of Part Two
is much more informal yet serious in that the conversations are conducted
between ordinary Japanese in a very colloquial Japanese and that here the
problem of war responsibility emerges as an inescapable question for all of us
Japanese to confront. The conversations take place at one point on a playground in a city after several years of the war and at the other on an island
in the South Seas occupied by the Japanese forces before the end of the war.
They contain a flavour of fantasy which makes it somewhat difficult for the
reader to grasp the story and are developed round a woman (Tobosuke) whose
lover (Kanohara), a superiorfirst-classin the Japanese army, is condemned to
death by hanging as a Class C war criminal. Towards the very end there is a
conversation between the two (pp. 169-70):
Tobosuke: I will never forget that you were hanged. Some people may want to forget
everything completely, but I never will.
Kanohara: Everyone wants to forget whatever is trying or unpleasant. Why else the
saying that oblivion is the wisdom of the people ?
Tobosuke: . . . Everyone in ten years' time will have forgotten who was a war criminal
and who wasn't.
Kanohara: But there's something else. Because people forget, evil will always be with
us in this world. Take the men who acted so badly in this war. However bad they
may have been, some of them are sure to be spared because of oblivion. They'll be
spared and grow powerful once again, you watch. They'll be prime ministers and
corporation presidents. They'll start writing their outrageous statements again.

This is a bald statement; yet it is so true that no one could possibly escape
from either feeling guilty or thinking back to his own war experiences with
anguish. For those generations who have had no experience of the war, it
would provide an opportunity to think over the problem of war and its
consequences.
Further, the book seems to present one more question other than that of
war responsibility and oblivion: the question of discrimination between Class
A, B and C war criminals. Our eyes have indeed been too much turned
towards the Tokyo Trial alone, whose prime object was to conduct the trial
of Class A war criminals as well as to denounce Japan's overall national
policies after the Manchurian incident in 1931. And the fact that not a few
Class B and C war criminals were sentenced to death or life imprisonment on
the spot where they had been engaged in fighting has singularly slipped our
mind. Kinoshita reminds us again of this fact by creating a scene of a South
Seas island in which soldiers are trembling with fear waiting for their moment
of'judgement' as POWs of the Allied forces.
Finally, a word about the translation. Mr. Gangloff's translation, with his
detailed and comprehensive introduction, is superb; his knowledge of
Japanese language is almost a wonder. It is true that when the original is

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REVIEWS

compared with the translation, differences of nuance between the two are to
be found especially in Part Two. One cannot complain about this, however,
for the words spoken in Part Two are just too colloquial to be translated
literally into English. The energy and diligence which Mr. Gangloffhas put
into the task of translation must be commended.
Tokai University

KYOZO SATO

The Japanese Thread: A Life in the U.S. Foreign Service. By J O H N

K.

EMMERSON. Holt, Rinehart and Winston: New York, 1978.
Japan's Political Revolution under Mac Arthur: A Participant's Account. By
J U S T I N W I L L I A M S , SR. University of Georgia Press, 1979.

These books are the accounts of two Americans who between them were in
excellent positions to observe the tumultous events in Japanese history before,
during and after the war. Though differing in style and scope, they are in
many ways complementary. John K. Emmerson was a foreign service officer
in Japan before the war, served in the China-Burma-India theatre during it,
and afterwards was attached for a short time to the Office of Political Adviser
to MacArthur. Justin Williams was a member of Government Section, SCAP,
throughout the occupation ofJapan.
Emmerson's book is the more personal account and covers the greater
period of time. He entered the foreign service in 1935 and arrived in Japan
shortly before the 26 February Incident of 1936. Thus from the American
Embassy in Tokyo he could see the gradual drift into war between the two
countries. Apart from a spell in Taiwan as American consul from June 1939
to March 1940, Emmerson was in Tokyo until October 1941 when he returned home shortly before the outbreak of war. Thereafter he saw service at
the U.S. Embassy in Peru where his duties were to help the Peruvian government deal with its citizens of Japanese descent who were seen as a threat from
the south. In December 1942 Emmerson was transferred to India and
assigned to General Stilwell's headquarters as a political adviser. From 1944
he was in North Burma as 'supervisor in charge of all psychological warfare
activities in the area and adviser in civil affairs matters'. Later in the year
(October) he became part of the 'Dixie Mission', the U.S. Army Observer
Group, which was sent to Yenan to meet the Chinese Communist leaders.
There Emmerson met Mao Tse-tung, Chou En-lai and Chu Teh, and
experienced the 'utopian' atmosphere of the Communist enclave. His main
duties in Yenan were concerned with the Japanese there and he met the
Japanese Communist leader Nosaka Sanzo. Emmerson's enthusiastic reports
from here were later to become ammunition for his anti-Communist inquisitors in the 1950s. He stayed in Yenan until December of 1944 and made one
more short trip there in January of 1945 before returning to Washington.
At the end of the war, Emmerson was the first member of the State Department's Political Adviser's Office and only the second foreign service officer to
reach Japan. He was there from September 1945 to January 19 January 1946

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