This book presents an unforgettable up-close account of the effects of World War II and the subsequent American occupation on Oita prefecture, through firsthand accounts from more than forty Japanese men and women who lived there. The interviewees include students, housewives, nurses, midwives, teachers, journalists, soldiers, sailors, Kamikaze pilots, and munitions factory workers. Their stories range from early, spirited support for the war through the devastating losses of friends and family members to air raids and into periods of hunger and fear of the American occupiers. The personal accounts are buttressed by archival materials; the result is an unprecedented picture of the war as experienced in a single region of Japan.
Edgar A. Porter is Professor Emeritus in the College of Asian Pacific Studies at Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University in Beppu, Japan. Previous publications include China in Oceania: Reshaping the Pacific?(co-editor, Berghahn Books, 2010), The People's Doctor: George Hatem and China's Revolution (University of Hawii Press, 1997), re-published by Foreign Languages Press, Beijing, 2003 and translated and reprinted under title Chairman Mao's Doctor (Kairyusha Press, Tokyo, 2010).Ran Ying Porter is a writer and her most recent novel is Black Dragon River (China Youth Press (Beijing, 2014).