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Mr. Smith goes to Tokyo : Japanese cinema under the American occupation, 1945-1952 /

Main Author: Hirano, Kyoko.
Format: Book
Language: English
Published: Washington, D.C. : Smithsonian Institute, 1992
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Review by Choice Review

Hirano's important book treats the clash of two very different cultures. It is a well-researched and clearly written work drawing on both English-language and Japanese sources about Japanese film during the American occupation of Japan (1945 to 1952). The author makes a detailed study of the period when the Japanese film industry survived strikes and rebuilt itself, and she provides valuable background for Japan's "golden age" of the 1950s, when by courageously facing the nation's identity crisis, confusion, and guilt, Japanese filmmakers made some of the finest films of the world. She is also thorough about the contradictions of American policy, including censorship and propaganda in a democracy, and Cold War politics pulling Japan first to the left, away from fascism and militarism, and then pulling it back to the right again, out of fear that it would become communist. Highly recommended. Advanced undergraduate; graduate; faculty. J. J. Jorgens; American University

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Library Journal Review

The U.S. occupational government exercised considerable control over postwar Japan, even exercising systematic review and censorship of Japanese films. Themes prohibited by the government's Civil Information and Education Section included militarism, suicide, revenge, nationalism, and racial and religious discrimination, and films condoning the exploitation of children, the degradation of women, or anything at variance with the Potsdam Declaration were also banned. Among the valuable sources consulted by the author, who is the director of the Japan Society's Film Center in New York, were declassified occupation government documents from Washington and Tokyo. This fascinating scholarly study is highly recommended for cinema and history collections.-- Richard W. Grefrath, Univ. of Nevada Lib., Reno (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.