By Takashi Fujitani

This book offers a major challenge to our understandings of nationalism, racism, colonialism and wartime mobilization during the Second World War. In parallel case studies – of Japanese Americans mobilized to serve in the United States Army and Koreans recruited or drafted into the Japanese military – T. Fujitani examines  the U.S. and Japanese empires as they struggled to manage racialized populations while waging total war.  Fujitani probes government policies and representations of these soldiers (including in film, in literature, and in archival documents) to reveal how characteristics of racism, nationalism, imperialism, colonialism, capitalism, gender politics, and the family changed on both sides of the Pacific, with  repercussions that remain with us today. Writing against the grain of conventional historiography the author demonstrates that the U.S. and Japan became increasingly alike during the course of the war, perhaps most tellingly in their common attempts to disavow racism even as they reproduced it in new ways and forms.

Takashi Fujitani is Professor of History and Dr. David Chu Professor and Director of Asia Pacific Studies, Asian Institute, University of Toronto.

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