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Special Issue: Re-examining Asia-Pacific War Memories: Grief, Narratives, and Memorials (Table of Contents)

May 15, 2022
Volume 20 | Issue 10
Article ID 5696


This special issue introduces thirteen original essays, each offering unique perspectives and re-examinations of Asia-Pacific War memories. The special issue’s broad geographical scope stretches the Asia-Pacific region. Essays’ diverse topics and themes highlight previously unexplored avenues and voices, from war cemeteries in Malaysia, to Japanese veterans’ complicated war narratives, and to war brides in New Zealand. Each explores a different facet of how war memories shaped and navigated a shifting postwar terrain and complex geopolitics. Toward this end, the special issue is woven around three broad themes in particular: sites of mourning, personal narratives, and commemoration and memorialization.



1. Justin Aukema, Daniel Milne, Mahon Murphy, and Ryōta Nishino - Re-examining Asia-Pacific War Memories: Grief, Narratives, and Memorials


Part I Sites of Mourning

2. Collin Rusneac - Building Transnational Memories at Japanese War and Colonial Cemeteries 

3. Alison Starr - Forever Alongside: War Cemeteries as Sites of Enemy Reconciliation

4. Beatrice Trefalt - Finding the remains of the dead: photographs from a Japanese mission to New Guinea, 1969-1970


Part II Personal Narratives

5. Justin Aukema - A Hero’s Defeat: Modernization Theory and Japanese Veterans’ Asia-Pacific “War Tales”

6. Ryōta Nishino - War, Trauma, and Humanity in a Japanese Veteran’s New Guinea War Memoir: Ogawa Masatsugu’s “Island of Death” (1969)

7. Matthew Allen - Robots, Kamikaze and War Memory: How a Children’s Comic can Help us Rethink Postmemory in Postwar Japan 


Part III Commemoration and Memorialization

8. Elena Kolesova and Mutsumi Kanazawa - Ambivalence of Identity: Stories of the Japanese War Brides in New Zealand

9. Daniel Milne and David Moreton - Remembering and Forgetting the War Dead at Ryōzen Kannon: A Site of Entangled and Transnational War Memories

10. Arnel Joven - Remembering Camp O’Donnell: From Shared Memories to Public History in the Philippines 

11. Mo Tian - The Legacy of the Second Sino-Japanese War in the People’s Republic of China: Mapping the Official Discourses of Memory



12. Mahon Murphy - Entangled Memories of Two World Wars


This is the Table of Contents for The Special Issue: Re-examining Asia-Pacific War Memories: Grief, Narratives, and Memorials, edited by Justin Aukema, Daniel Milne, Mahon Murphy, and Ryota Nishino.

Introduction, Part I and II will be published on May 15, 2022.
Part III and Concluson will be published on June 1, 2022.

Justin Aukema is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Economics at Osaka Metropolitan University. He received his Ph.D. from Sophia University in 2020. Aukema has written broadly on topics of war history and memory in Japan. Some of his previous articles include “The Need to Narrate the Tokyo Air Raids: The Literature of Saotome Katsumoto” in The Routledge Handbook of Modern Japanese Literature (2016) and “Cultures of (Dis)remembrance and the Effects of Discourse at the Hiyoshidai Tunnels,” Japan Review, No.32 (2019). He can be contacted at

Daniel Milne is Senior Lecturer at Kyoto University’s Institute for Liberals Arts and Sciences (ILAS). His research focuses on the modern history of tourism in Japan and Kyoto, and the political and cultural role the discourses and spaces of tourism have played in war, occupation, and reconciliation. In 2019, Daniel co-edited “War, Tourism, and Modern Japan,” a special issue of Japan Review. His current research is supported by a JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on POW tourism and reconciliation.

Ryōta Nishino is Designated Assistant Professor at the School of Law, Nagoya University, Japan. His research interests revolve around the circulation of history and historical memory in various media such as school textbooks and travelogues (Studies in Travel Writing, Japanese Studies, Journal of Pacific History, and Pacific Historical Review). His second book, Japanese Perception of Papua New Guinea: War, Memory and Travel, is due in October 2022 from Bloomsbury Academic.

Mahon Murphy is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, Kyoto University. His research interests focus on the First World War as global war, internment, and the interaction of empires during warfare. He is the author of Colonial Captivity During the First World War: Internment and the Fall of the German Empire, 1914-1919 Cambridge University Press, 2017.