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  • “ . . . And my heart screams”: Children and the War of Emotions

    Sabine Frühstück

    Chapter from the book: Frühstück S. & Walthall A. 2017. Child’s Play: Multi-Sensory Histories of Children and Childhood in Japan.


    This chapter, by Sabine Frühstück, explores how children have been useful to militarism. During World War II, Japan’s leaders used children to lend a moral authority to war and encouraged the dissemination of images of vulnerable and caring children interacting with soldiers. Children’s early socialization into a military-centric culture was part of a campaign to both suppress and incite emotion in adults and children alike. Children were used as emotional capital because they were assumed to be politically innocent, pure, and endowed with authentic feelings, and adults were expected to respond with a set of specific, predictable emotions. After the war, the production of a victim culture turned the representation of the child into a symbol of suffering and the need for peace. Images of children placed them in the role of mediators with the American Occupation forces, and today the Self-Defense Forces put representations of children on recruitment posters.

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    Frühstück, S. 2017. “ . . . And my heart screams”: Children and the War of Emotions. In: Frühstück S. & Walthall A, Child’s Play. California: University of California Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1525/luminos.40.j

    This chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives 4.0 license. Copyright is retained by the author(s)

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    Published on Oct. 10, 2017


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