Thursday, March 7, 2019

Korean “Comfort Women” of Wwii Essay

Use curiosity to ask ch on the wholeenging indecisions ab push finished what erupt as normal, everyday banalities in order to try and understand venture visible the concealed versed urgeing of the practice and theorizing of international dealing Cynthia EnloeIn multiplication of armed conflict, wowork force be close susceptible to force play and silencing d unrivalled the informalization, de benevolentization, and swordtization of their identities. Janie Leatherman spirited cleans this point when stating gender based violence often intensifies and becomes more funda custodytal in a crisis, even escalating into a tool of war (4). This is unavoidable in a patriarchal ball club where hegemonic virile values work up gender norms and gender expectations. Sexual violence during armed conflict does non develop in isolation from the societys preexistent socioeconomic and heathenishly shaped gender human relationships.Furthermore, the patriarchal nature of a society does non work alone in creating injustices, much(prenominal) as raiseual violence, against women during and after armed conflict there must be a framework that embraces the realities, contradictions, and intersections of various worldwide relations of business office (Kempadoo, 29). These intersections include the relationships mingled with gender, race, class, cultural, and societal ideologies. In my paper, I take on Cynthia Enloes scrap of using an enquiring, gendered lens to explore the silencing of women during and after war by examining the field of study of the Korean puff of air women of origination fight II. I will fecesvass how the intersection of prevailing affable determinants and ideologies have regulated and perpetuated the rationale and, thus, the invisibleness of the Korean nurse women during and in the issue of gentlemans gentleman struggle II.lit Review & research modeologyYoshiaki Yoshimis sympathizer Women Sexual thrall in the Nipponese ar ray during knowledge base War II, Margaret Stetzs Legacies of the allay Women of piece War II, as well as Toshiyuki Tanakas unavowed Horrors Nipponese War Crimes in World War II were principally use without my research to gather the testimonies of hold up Korean console women. All three books give a comprehensive look into the phenomenon of the Nipponese legions blowableness women ashes with historical background and an abundance of testimonies and financial take hold of the Korean nurse women. Because my research focuses on the silencing of Korean comfort women during and in the aftermath of World War II, these oral histories stomach crucial funding evidence throughout my paper. Besides two testimonies by one Nipponese spend and one Nipponese armed forces doctor, testimonies by early(a)wise Nipponese soldiers and government activity officials that have acknowledged the existence of the comfort women post were awkward to find.thitherfore, throughout thes e testimonies, I specifically looked for patterns that revealed evidence of Nipponese gender hierarchies through the diction and accounts that imply any dehumanization and objectification imparted by Nipponese soldiers. To analyze the determinants that had cultivated the Japanese comfort direct system and, more importantly, the targeting of Korean women for the system, I specifically used Cynthia Enloes Maneuvers The International administration of Militarizing Womens Lives as well as Janie Leathermans Sexual Violence and fortify Conflict. Both authors give insights and analyses of the causes and consequences of chargeual violence during armed conflict.They both mark the interplay of patriarchal systems, gender constructions/norms, and political/economic/cultural structures as biggish contributors. In addition to these specific determinants, I incorporate Sara Ahmeds analysis to versed violence by considering the cultural intersections between gender, race, and colonialis m in my uninflected approach (138). By applying and intertwining the critical approaches of Enloe, Leatherman, and Ahmed, I am able to confiscate the multifaceted, but intersecting institutions and ideologies that had fabricated the invisibility of and the rationale for the Korean comfort women.Background of the Japanese whiff StationsThe euphemism comfort women was the name depute to thousands of women mainly Korean but also Burmese, Chinese, Dutch, Eurasians, Indians, Indonesian, Filipina, and Taiwanese who were forced into the Japanese comfort office system (Japans military controlled whore houses or brothels) throughout World War II (Yoshimi). These so called comfort stations were far from comforting. The conditions of the bodily spaces have been described as barrack-like facilities, rudimentary tents, or shacks (Yoshimi, 25). wiz Japanese military doctor has testified that the women were treated like fe male person ammo and that their dehumanized bodies were reduced to the likes of earthly concern toilets (Wantabe, 20). The testimony of Hwang Kum-Ju, one of the first Korean comfort women to testify in public, sole(prenominal) reveals a glimpse of the sufferings she and clotheshorse comfort women had to endure There were so many soldiers. Sometimes, we had to do it with 20 to thirty soldiers a day. I think ours was the solo comfort station in that area, and soldiers and officers came whenever they had approximately spare moments. Higher-ups came freely, and at night we usually slept with officers. Women who assure venereal diseases were simply left to die or shot. Anyone resisting the advances was beaten (Kim, 97).Comfort women were subjected to daily rapes, familiar diseases, torture, murder, and other forms of mental, physical, and depend onual violence. The comfort stations were created during World War II as a solution to the aftermath of the Japanese military committing mass murders and rapes as they moved across mainland Asia. The c atalyst for the existence of the comfort system was the most infamous massacre known as the The Rape of Nanking in which the whole village of Nanking was murdered after the Japanese soldiers raped approximately 20,000 village women. Because this particular massacre caused such an margin call in the international press, Emperor Hirohito of Japan ordered the creation and dogmatic expansion of the comfort stations. However, the purpose for which these comfort stations were created was not out of concern for the safety of local women of in the territories in which the Japanese soldiers were stationed.Naoai Murata, the self-denial Agency Director of the Secretariat in 1992, claimed that they were created in order to obtain order and to ease the anti-Japanese feeling aroused by the Japanese soldiers deeds (Schmidt, 88). This would restore the image of the Imperial Army by confining and concealing rape and knowledgeable violence to military controlled facilities. Additionally, as the war progressed, these comfort stations transformed into spaces that provided opportunities for the Japanese soldiers to have get off as a means of relaxation and comfort, a boost for morale, a space to assert their masculinity, to relieve the stress and fear of combat, and an outlet from fixed military discipline (Yoshimi, 53).The following interview of one Japanese soldier highlights the psychological influence and importance of the comfort women to the Japanese soldiers Even though we had just returned from lengthy military operations at the front, the thought of having sex grime us leave immediately for the comfort women. When we arrived at where the women were, soldiers took their place in line and mulled over life-time and death while postponement for their turn. There was nothing else like the supreme feeling of completeness that the soldiers experienced when engaging in sex with the women. This was the merely way for them to whole-heartedly escape from their abnormal existence (Yoshimi, 54-55). The protagonism and rationale for the comfort women system reveal the dependency of the military on women. The comfort women system was considered an important element for the war efforts, even if only temporary.Why Korean Comfort Women?Approximately 80% of the 100,000 to 200,000 comfort women were Korean with ages ranging from 13 to mid-20s (Yoshimi, 67). The question that put forward be elucidated from this statistic is simple wherefore were the majority of the comfort women Korean? The answer to this question can be answered with the military usually does not need or want- all women to provide all these militarized services. Rather, government officials have needed women of some classes and some races and some ages to serve some of these functions (Enloe 2000, 44). Furthermore, in order to further peg the determinants to why this marginalised group was targeted, there needs to be an engagement with the interplay of global relations of power around gender, race, nationality, and the economy (Kempadoo, 29). These underlying intertwining ideologies and institutions that have contributed to the diaphanous targeting of Korean women for the Japanese comfort stations need to be explored.racial Ideologies RacismThe excessive usage of Korean women for the Japanese comfort system is directly linked to the elements of racism. This phenomenon can be analyzed by the intertwined relationship between colonialism, race, favorablely constructed gender ideologies. As Sara Ahmed emphasizes, a consideration of cultural intersections between gender, race, and colonialism is important for two main reasons. First it charters that feminism discard any approach,which isolates the production of gender from race and colonialism. As a result, it requires us to consider how certain feminisms may themselves function as part of the colonialist finis (138). With this framework in mind, it can be elucidated that the targeting of Korean women stems fro m the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905 from which Korea became a protectorate of Japan and later officially colonized in 1910. notwithstanding the fact that Korea had become a colony under Japans rule, the Japanese government and societys sentiment dictated that the Korean commonwealth was still considered to be racially inferior (Tanaka, 96).While exploiting and objectifying Korean women, the Japanese military did not see it appropriate to exploit their own women to the comparable extent Japanese officials believed international laws were not applicable to Japans colonies, and this, combined with the imprint in the superiority of Japanese women and the suitability of women of other races for prostitution, cemented to use Korean women from the colonies as comfort women (Tanaka, 97) The Korean comfort women were positioned and identified as uncivilized, inferior, subjugated, and promiscuous by the Japanese manlike colonial mindset. Derogatory and sexualized words, accompanied by violence, were used against the Korean comfort women at the comfort stations as racially discriminatory identifiers of the superior and the inferior groups. These words included Ppagayor Senpino kuseni which translates to Idiot zilch but a Korean cunt (Yoshimi, 113).Enloe explains that objectifying foreign women makes it easier for military officials to marginalize them it was far easier for commanders to send women if they could be portrayed as rootless, promiscuous, parasitic, and generally a drag on the militarys discipline and battle keenness (2000, 40). The images inscribed on the inferior, colonized Korean comfort women rose from the colonialist, racial, and virile institutions. The importance of the intersection of these institutions is emphasized by Kempadoo a large total of women upon whose bodies and labor such constructions of masculinity depend are of nations, races, and ethnicities other than those of men is a reality that cannot be cut downed or ignore (31). These constructions of the Korean comfort womens identities fabricated a exculpation that only conventional the Japanese nations domination over Korean through the Korean comfort women.Gender Ideologies Sexualized Femininity/Militarized Masculinity During World War II, the prominently patriarchal nature of the Japanese society reestablished the preexisting gendered, dichotomous construction of sexual urge for both men and women in which the gunpoint of masculinity of soldiers was greatly dependent on the comfort women. Cynthia Enloe highlights this notion by recognizing that the women were one of the strengths, which maintained the military organization (Enloe 1988, 187). Enloe draws attention to this dependency by stating the military needs women as the gender women to provide men with masculinity reinforcing incentives to endure all the hardships of soldiering (Enloe 1988, 214). During World War II, within the Japanese military, there were socially constructed forms of masculinity an d femininity that were reinforced by the flack of war and the military. The service of and dependency on the objectified womens body stems from what Carole Vance explains to be social constructions of gender and sexuality, not as natural and unchanging biologically determined notions of gender and sexuality. Socially constructed gender roles have shaped sexuality as a form of power (Mackinnon, 2).Catherine Mackinnon further describes these powerful gender roles the social beingnesss we know as man and cleaning woman are hold by social requirements of heterosexuality, which institutionalizes male sexual domination and female sexual submission The womans identity becomes inexplicably given up to her sexuality, becoming that which is most of her own, yet is most taken away (Tong, 111). Sexuality becomes distorted into an apotheosis of sexuality that reduces women to sexual objects while placing men as the dominating, sexual subject. The extremely hierarchical gender system of Ja pan during World War II fostered an inequality between men and women in which men create the demand and women are the supply (Hughes, 11). The objectification of the Korean women was needed for the militarization of men. (Enloe 2000). During times of war, the ideologies of masculinity that their love and respect can only be met by being manful, powerful, and ultimately violent are fuelled (Kokopeli, 233). This is because the military as a social institution is constructed by ideals of male sexuality.The sexualization of the female body aids the military in the marginalization of women as it depicts women as objects and tools for the soldiers sexual mirth. Vance states that all social construction approaches adopt the view that physically equivalent sexual acts may have varying social significance and inbred meaning depends on how they are defined and understood in contrary cultures and historical periods (29). Militarized masculinities are sexualized in violent forms, which wa s clearly the baptistery among the Japanese soldiers. The socially constructed feminine identity at the time was one of which sexuality was only designed to service individual men and male defined institutions. This explanation creates a foundation for the upheld rigid distinctions between masculine and feminine ideals in the Japanese society during World War II. For the Japanese male soldiers, the militarized masculine model of sexuality embodied notions of dominance, destruction, aggression, and sexual conquest. On the other hand, the Korean comfort women subjected to this patriarchal society were merely reduced to submissive, obedient, and sexual tools.Enloe also argues that wartime sexual violence provides masculinity-reinforcing incentives to endure all the hardships of soldiering (1988, 214). The practice of going to the comfort stations to have sex with the comfort women became a routine for the Japanese soldiers the women were seen as a necessary evil (Tanaka, 67). Whereas on the battlefield, the Japanese soldiers had little control, having sex with women against their will gave the men the masculine power of dominance and self-assertion. In battle, Japanese soldiers were merely seen as military ammunition for combat, but they were able to reinforce their own masculine subjectivity and agency through the sexual objectification of Korean comfort women.This can be comprehended through the account of one Korean comfort woman, Yi Sunok There were many times when I was almost killed. If I refused to do what one man asked, he would come back drunk and jeopardise me with his sword. Others simply arrived drunk, and had intercourse with their swords stuck in the tatami. This left the tatami scarred, but this sort of demeanour was more of a threat to make me accede to their desires and give them satisfaction (Tanaka, 56). The Korean comfort women provided an environment where the men could reinforce militarized masculine at the expense of the womens dehumani zation as well as their mental and physical health. The Korean comfort women not only suffered apply sex, but sex routinely accompanied by routine violence and torture.Although the comfort women station system was blatant throughout World War II, it was rationalized by socially constructed, yet biologically justified, notions of male sexuality. Vance would call this justification as biological determinism, which is the belief that biology determines fundamentally all demeanor and actions. The belief that the comfort women were needed because of the male Japanese soldiers biologically determined, robustious sexual needs can be perceived in the privy(p) report by a psychiatrist of the Konodai army hospital in 1939 The army authorities established comfort stationsbecause they assumed that it was unaccepted to suppress the sexual urge of soldiers.The main purposes of setting up comfort facilities were to relieve soldiers of daily stresses by giving them a sense of sexual satisfacti on and to prevent rapes which would damage the reputation of the Imperial army from misadventure (Yoshimi, 1992, 228). This understanding of male sexuality inadvertently reduces the rationale for the comfort station system to a biological one. It justifies the creation of the comfort women system as unavoidable and inevitable as though there was no other solution. The biological determinism argument is a legitimizing tool for it positions this constructed masculinity as external of human control. The trope of uncontrollable military male sexuality root in the nature rationale only suspends moral and legal restrains on the comfort women system while perpetuating and justifying the womens objectified, subordinate position. Socioeconomic situationThe majority of the Korean women that were targeted in the comfort station system were from a low socioeconomic class. Hughes reiterates this point by pointing out that heighteners of areas in the sex industry take advantage of poverty, u nemployment and a desire to emigrate to recruit and traffic women into the sex industry (11). Hughes also includes a report from the Womens NGO which states, economic hard times has lead to a falloff of womens psychological state with a loss of self gaze and hope for the future. Women accept unlikely offers of employment in unskilled jobs at high salaries with the resignation that it cannot be worse than their posit lives. Recruiters for the sex industry target the most economically depresses areas (12). The Korean women of low economic spot and class were vulnerable to the deceitful recruitment methods of the Japanese. Forexample, the Korean population in the Japanese colonized territories was very poor during World War II because Japan had taken any available means of production of regimen and clothes for the war effort (Argibay, 378).This left most of the young Korean women and girls living in poverty and starting menial labor at a very early age in order to support their fa milies. Recruiters would encourage compliance by convincing the women that they would obtain high pay jobs as seamstresses and nurses or working in a hospital or a factory (Stetz, 10). One comfort women named Suntok Kim recalls that when she was being recruited, the prospects of being a comfort woman for the Japanese seemed promising because she came from a poor family and had no education. Working in a factory was far better than her genuine working and living conditions (Stetz, 10). Furthermore, the U.S. Office of War Interrogation Report nary(prenominal) 49 reports that when being recruited Korean women assumed that comfort service consisted of tour wounded soldiers and generally making the soldiers happy, and that many Korean women enlisted on the butt of these misrepresentations (Arigbay, 378)Another means of recruitment that targeted Koreans of low socioeconomic class was through the method of debt bondage, indenturing the Korean comfort women to the Japanese military. Ec onomically destitute country-bred families were deceived into thinking that they had a choice of whether or not to sell their daughters to the Japanese military however, in reality, they were being coerced with violence and had no agency in this matter. Many reports have indicated that families who refused to sell their daughters were killed and girls taken to the Japanese military bases after. The Japanese would also threaten to destroy the whole village, kill the elders and children and commit other violent measures (Arigbay, 278). Many Korean comfort women did not have the agency, autonomy, or the economic option to oppose Japanese forces. Offering a allowance was simply a customary ruse by the Japanese military to justify their methods in taking these powerless Korean women.Continuum of Injustice & invisibleness in the AftermathStigmatization Cultural & Social InstitutionsIn the aftermath of World War II, the experiences of the comfort women were be quietd for approximately 50 years. This silence was finally broken in the early nineties when the issue was brought to light as former comfort women began to release their testimonies to the public. When this issue began to gain public attention, the Japanese government immediately declared that the comfort women system did not exist in the Japanese military and thus there could be no question of any justification, memorial, or disclosures by the Japanese government (Uncomfortable Truths).To this day, comfort women are still waiting for an apology for the violation of their human rights and for the objectification of their bodies and identities from the Japanese government. Many grassroots organizations and feminist groups have been created since the early mid-nineties to draw attention to issue of the comfort women. These include the Korean Research Institute for Chongsindae and the Korean Council for the Women Drafted for Sexual Slavery by Japan. Since the early 1990s over one hundred women in South Kor ea have registered with the Korean government as former comfort women (Kim, 74).However, despite these efforts, the stark question of why the surviving Korean comfort women were conquer for so gigantic still remains. The surviving women have not only suffered from mental and physical injuries, but also had to suffer from additional social injuries. Many of the surviving Korean comfort women have had to live a stigmatized and isolated life as they tried to assimilate back into the communities. They were condemned to live out their lives as social, pariahs, shunned by their families, tortured by injury and illness, some sent mad by their ordealsome committed suicide, others became insane (Askin, 13). This stigmatization can be attributed to the Confucian societies in Korea for the Korean comfort women were products of this culture. The Confucian definition of the traditional feminine identity highlights docility and emphasizes chastity as a womans most important virtue (Stetz, 13).A s Iris Chang reiterates Asian Confucianism-particularly Korean Confucianism- upheld female purity as a virtue great than life and perpetuated the belief that any woman who could live through such a degrading experience and not commit suicide was herself an spite to society This cultural ideology demanded that unmarried women must be virgins and blamed the women for not being able to prevent any forms of sexual violation (53). With high moral value attached to chastity and purity, the comfort women invariably emerged from their wartime experiences defiled, yet unable to accuse their abusers (Askin, 25). The fear of isolation and stigma from their defilement only silenced them, leaving these sexual atrocities in the dark for 50 years. The internalisation of this feminine identity caused Korean comfort women to lose self-respect, to live in shame, and ultimately perpetuate their own stigmatization.Furthermore, the social stigma and shame attached to rape and sex were fostered by Kor ean society and the Korean comfort womens own families. bar Kelly explains this stigma as a tell apart of individual character that the women cannot escapethe stigmatized person is perceived as possessing decrepit will, unnatural passions, and treacherous beliefs (192). The stigma of rape and sex embody has implications on community, family, and responsibility. Kelly asserts that stigma associated with sex work circumscribes ones social relationscauses fear and shamecreates inauthenticity in daily life (194). Keith Howard describes the lives that the surviving Korean comfort women had to endure in their communities When they returned to Koreathey were neither faithful nor chaste. They were not typic women.The families of the comfort women feared the ostracism they would suffer if the shameful late(prenominal) were discovered the women became an supererogatory burden, and there was little chance to marry them off (7). This social stigma and discrimination oppressed the survivin g Korean comfort women. As Kelly points out, social relations with the family were tainted. Some of the Korean comfort women were seen as a rase to their family by their own family and by the rest of society. One Korean comfort woman by the name of Tokchin Kim has revealed that the honor of her family and the relationship with her family hindered her from publicizing her experience, which only allowed the comfort station system to remain invisible. Tokchin Kim had tried to register at the Korean Council for the Women Drafted for Military Sexual Slavery by Japan as a former comfort woman. However, her nephew expressed You will only establish trouble on your family and your children will be traumatized (Yoshimi, 49). Because of the stigmatization, humiliation, and disgrace that inevitably arose from their past as comfort women, the Korean comfort womens experiences had unjustly remained hidden for an inordinate amount of time.ConclusionThe Japanese comfort stations during World War II completely disregarded comfort womens rights and silenced their past as a product of the rationale for the system. Leatherman explicates that the silences and justifications undergirded the economic, social, cultural, and political power structures of patriarchy. Patriarchy is a hierarchal social order centered on dominant or hegemonic forms of masculinity (4). The justifications and invisibility stem from the intersection of socially constructed gender, cultural, racial, and socioeconomic institutions. Comfort women have had to unjustly bear the shame, ostracism, and dishonor that should be imputed to the perpetrator of sexual violence (Askin, 31).There has been a continuum of this disregard into the present day as the Japanese government has failed to give an official apology for their wartime atrocities after 50 years of ignoring the existence of comfort women. This untiring neglect reproduces injustice and invisibility of the comfort women to this day. As of right now, there are only 63 registered Korean comfort women in South Korea waiting out their last years to be fully recognized as comfort women by the Japanese government. In order for there to be any strides in this movement, it is imperative that the social and gender hierarchies encumbering Japanese and Korean societies be deconstructed and reevaluated. Additionally, the vast gap between the value of the female and males experience and rights in the patriarchal nature of Japans society needs to be closed.BibliographyAhmed, Sara. Construction of Women And/in the Orient. Women, Power, and Resistance An intromission to Womens Studies. By Tess Cosslett, Alison Easton, and Penny Summerfield. Buckingham England pay UP, 1996. 225-32. Print.Argibay, Carmen M. Sexual Slavery and the Comfort Women of World War II. Berkeley Journal of International Law 21.375 (n.d.) 375-89. Print.Askin, Kelly D. Comfort Women- change Shame and Stigma from Victims to Victimizers. 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