Download 'A Nation of a Hundred Million Idiots': A Social History of by Jayson Makoto Chun PDF

By Jayson Makoto Chun

This e-book deals a background of jap tv audiences and the preferred media tradition that tv helped to spawn. In a relatively brief interval, the tv helped to reconstruct not just postwar eastern pop culture, but in addition the japanese social and political panorama. through the early years of tv, eastern of all backgrounds, from politicians to moms, debated the results on society. the general public discourse surrounding the expansion of tv published its function in forming the identification of postwar Japan through the period of high-speed progress (1955-1973) that observed Japan reworked into an monetary strength and one of many world's most sensible exporters of tv programming.

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Extra resources for 'A Nation of a Hundred Million Idiots': A Social History of Japanese Television, 1953-1973

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During the days of imperial expansion of the 1930s, the government portrayed the emperor, the Japanese flag, and Shinto shrines as sacred symbols of the empire to be treated with reverence. Prewar officials labeled foreign imports like socialism and western music as contrary to the empire. Yet, in the confusing cultural atmosphere of the 1950s, one poll revealed that Western-style jazz singers evidenced a high degree of support for the emperor system. And how could one explain other cultural contradictions: the rockabilly singer who performed at a Shinto shrine, or the band of leftist laborers in a May Day demonstration who ended the day by furling their red flag and watching the nationalistic film, The Emperor Meiji and the Great Russo-Japanese War, which glorified imperial expansion?

In this sense, radio by 1945 had not created a truly national culture that could unite Japanese in a moment of simultaneity. Postwar television owed much to the prewar legacies of radio, one of the first carriers of the postwar mass culture. The prewar and wartime years saw this broadcast medium become an established part of Japanese life, so when television made its debut in 1953, most Japanese had already been exposed to the paradigms of broadcasting. In the postwar context of 34 “A Nation of a Hundred Million Idiots”?

Surprisingly, underneath the rhetoric of cultural division, Japanese society in the 1950s managed to remain free of much bloodshed, saw economic growth, and appeared strikingly stable compared to other societies in transition, such as nearby Maoist China where tens of thousands died in a revolutionary upheaval of society. ”8 Conservative factions tied together under the LDP (Liberal Democratic Party) controlled enough of a majority of parliamentary seats to pass laws, but socialist factions, tied together under the Japan Socialist Party (JSP), controlled about a third of the Diet’s seats, just enough to block constitutional revisions.

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