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Globalizing American Studies$
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Brian T. Edwards and Gaonkar Dilip Parameshwar

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780226185064

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226185088.001.0001

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Transpacific Complicity and Comparatist Strategy

Transpacific Complicity and Comparatist Strategy

Failure in Decolonization and the Rise of Japanese Nationalism

(p.240) [Eight] Transpacific Complicity and Comparatist Strategy
Globalizing American Studies

Naoki Sakai

University of Chicago Press

Japanese nationalism has gained its peculiar belligerence against the background of the loss of hope. The loss of hope reflects many aspects of Japanese society today, two of which are an increasing income disparity and the loss of upward social mobility. During Japan's Lost Decade of dismal economic growth, higher unemployment, and the retreat of traditional leftist organizations including the Socialist Party and the General Council of Labor Unions of Japan, not only national television networks and national newspapers but also the publishing industry at large seem to have taken a definitive turn toward the political right. The rhetoric of Japanese culturalism has been predominantly obsessed with the image of Japanese distinctiveness, but such rhetoric was produced only in contrast to some fantastic image of Western culture. Modern politics has appealed to the idea of nationality as the basis for its legitimacy and has constituted internationality as relationships among the state sovereignties, each of which is hypothesized to represent its own nation as an ethnolinguistic unity.

Keywords:   Japanese nationalism, culturalism, politics, Japanese society, sovereignties

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