Go to contents

Korean and Chinese Historians to Cope with Japanese History Distortions

Korean and Chinese Historians to Cope with Japanese History Distortions

Posted April. 17, 2005 23:34,   


Korean and Chinese historians will hold a seminar to analyze controversial issues in a new Japanese history textbook and try to find joint countermeasures against them.

The Center for Information on Korean Culture (CIKC) in the Academy of Korean Studies (head: Han Do-hyun) is holding a “Korea-China joint academic seminar on Japanese history distortions” at Nanjing Teachers University on April 18 in cooperation with the Nanjing Massacre Museum of China.

On the Korean side, Kim Ji-hoon, a research professor of the Academy of East Asian Studies at Sungkyunkwan University, Ahn Byung-woo, a Korean history professor at Hanshin University, and Shin Joo-back, a senior researcher at the Institute for Social Development and Policy Research of Seoul National University will read a paper on the Japanese history textbook. On the Chinese side, Zhu Chengshan, head of the Nanjing Massacre Museum, and Su Zhiliang, publisher from Shanghai Teachers University will appear.

This seminar is attracting interest in that Korean and Chinese scholars will cooperatively analyze and point out the truths and causes of distortions of the Japanese history textbook after the Japanese government announced the inspection result of its own history textbook. The CIKC and the Nanjing Massacre Museum will discuss joint countermeasures to deal with the distortions in the Japanese history textbook.

Professor Kim made public in his paper entitled, “Civic education through a history textbook—the backdrop to the appearance of new Japanese history textbooks and civic education,” that Japanese rightists started insisting on the establishment of a historical view that idealizes Japanese history and gives priority to national interests under the world’s atmosphere of inspiring national separation or independence and nationalism in the 1990’s.” Kim added, “The appearance of the new history textbook resulted from awareness that Japan was strong and special after the collapse of socialism and the Asian financial crisis.”

Professor Ahn pointed out, in his paper entitled “Tradition Awareness and History Education,” that Japanese description of Korean pre-modern history had a tendency to degrade and distort Korean history on the basis of minority theories and irrelevant historical materials, use a relative superiority sense of Japanese history, and cover up its act of invasion by using the term “dispatch of troops” in describing the Imjin Waeran (the Japanese Invasion of Korea in 1592).

Jung-Bo Suh suhchoi@donga.com