'Hello, War Brides’: Heteroglossia, Counter-Memory, and the Auto/biographical Work of Japanese War Brides

Citation:

Yoshimizu, Ayaka. 2009. “‘Hello, War Brides’: Heteroglossia, Counter-Memory, and the Auto/Biographical Work of Japanese War Brides.” Meridians 10 (1): 111. doi:10.2979/mer.2009.10.1.111.

Author: Ayaka Yoshimizu

Abstract:

This article examines “Hello, War Brides,” a series of short, auto/biographical essays authored by two Japanese war brides from the state of Washington. I view this text as a product of collaborative “memory work.” Based on a textual analysis of its narratives and form, I argue that this work represents individual war brides' memories as counter-memories that provide a new understanding of the experiences of Japanese war brides. Such an understanding could be thought of as an alternative to the monolithic and stigmatized images of Japanese war brides, imposed primarily by the Japanese mainstream media against which these women have struggled for decades. The production of the text also worked to reconstruct and renew the women's own memories in a positive light and to create a new form of community of remembrance. This essay aims to shed light on both the literary and the social significance of “Hello, War Brides” as a way to re-evaluate the Japanese war brides' transnational movement that has taken place in the years after its publication.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women Regions: Asia, East Asia Countries: Japan

Year: 2009

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