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Making Japanese CitizensCivil Society and the Mythology of the Shimin in Postwar Japan$
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Simon Andrew Avenell

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780520262706

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520262706.001.0001

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Beheiren and the Asian Shimin: The Fate of Conscientious Civic Activism

Beheiren and the Asian Shimin: The Fate of Conscientious Civic Activism

(p.106) Chapter 3 Beheiren and the Asian Shimin: The Fate of Conscientious Civic Activism
Making Japanese Citizens

Simon Andrew Avenell

University of California Press

The part of Beheiren's spokesperson and the ideas which were used to grow and shape the movement are the focus of this chapter. In doing this, the chapter looks in detail at the intellectuals' commitment that had something to do with people's race, ethnicity, and nation, because in them, people uncovered the core intellectual foundations of Beheiren. Based on the ideas of Oda and his collegues, war memories blending together with anti-Americanism, Pan-Asianism, third worldism, and Black Power can be detected. Through these ideas, people could see a movement deeply opposed to the Japanese state, supposedly rendered into an impotent client of the United States. In connection to the topic, the Anpo struggle ended with shimin as the defenders of an affluent and autonomous daily life; Beheiren's leaders championed an Asian shimin who questioned the very foundation of Japan's autonomy and affluence and longed for a spiritual return to the East.

Keywords:   Beheiren, Oda, activism, Japan, United States

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