So Far from the Bamboo Grove by Yoko Kawashima Watkins

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Is this book a credible source that can be used as a textbook? this book is about her life and she described how horrible the koreans were and according to her, there were many korean men that raped...

Is this book a credible source that can be used as a textbook?

this book is about her life and she described how horrible the koreans were and according to her, there were many korean men that raped YOUNG japanese women when the main problem we need to focus on is about those 'comfort women' that the Japanese government created/abused in order to satisfy the sexual needs of the japanese soldiers. What is the truth?

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teach1052 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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I use this book, an autobioraphical work, paired with Year of Impossible Goodbyes.  It does not matter which book you start with, having the counter-point book is vital for the other side of what people are going through during this time period.

The Koreans living through Japanese occupation and then Korean/Communist rule, the sufferings of the Koreans comes through.  The Japanese who have been living in Korea and not part of the ruling powers and at risk when the Japanese move out and the Korean/Communists take over.

Both of these books are more than credible and essential to the understanding...

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alexb2 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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bookB.A. from Georgetown University


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gbeatty eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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melonbarmonster | Student

Absolutely not.  It is immense ignorance to think that the values of the WWII experience in Asia is to teach a sympathetic narrative of a Japanese military family's escape from NK.  This book is a selfish distortion of historical realities and neatly ignores and sweeps under the rug the moral travesty of Yoko's family's presence in Korea and Manchuria.  Do we teach pro-KKK narratives to our children?  Do we teach Nazi stories to our children?

FYI some history: there are no bamboos in NK. There were no communist soldiers in NK.  Japanese retreat occurred under heavy military protection as well documented by Korean, Japanese and US records of that time.  Yoko's father was part of Japanese administration that operated Unit 731 where they performed medical atrocities such as performing vivasections on pregnant women, tested biological warfare on Korean and Chinese, etc..

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