EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY Presents
“Japanese Imperialism, Women, Media: From the Perspective of Analyzing the Magazine, Taiwan Fujinkai“
University of Tokyo
Feb. 20th, Thu 5:00-6:30 pm (NEW TIME FOR WINTER QUARTER!)
Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).
Refreshments will be provided
This paper aims to understand how women in colonial Taiwan were influenced by Japanese imperialism and its culture by analyzing the magazine, Taiwan Fujinkai. I chose Taiwan Fujinkai for analysis because it has rich contents (each issue has at least 100 pages) and a longer publication period than other similar magazines. I focus on the first era of publication (1934-1936) in order to investigate the founder, KAKINUMA Fumiaki, as well as the chief editor’s editing concept and he is known as a journalist whose main concern and passion was children and women. Taiwan Fujinkai was analysed from the perspective of Japanese people living in Japan, Japanese people living in Taiwan, and Taiwanese people living in Taiwan, to understand Taiwan during the Japanese colonization period. This is important because previous studies by Leo T.S. CHING (“Becoming “Japanese””, 2001) explained the formation of Taiwanese political and cultural identities under the dominant Japanese colonial discourse of assimilation and imperialization. However, most previous researches overlooked that Japanese people living in Taiwan also faced many conflicts of their own identities while living in Taiwan. The core of my research is to analyze and explain why the Japanese people living in Taiwan during that time called their daughters “Taiwanese Girls”, which had positive and negative implications. The analysis and evidence of this phenomenon is extremely unique in its kind. It is interesting that the word usage of Taiwanese women on Taiwan Fujinkai was not only used by Taiwanese women born in Taiwan, but also by women born from Japanese and Taiwanese families. In conclusion that women in colonial Taiwan had to be educated as modern and independent women in order to devote themselves to the Japanese imperials. However, there is an ambiguous line between Taiwanese born in Taiwan and Japanese born in Taiwan. We cannot overlook this historical phenomenon so that we can have a better understanding of colonial Taiwan in the 1930s.