井の中の蛙

12/28/2010

Syllabus Blogging: Modern Japan and World History

Filed under: — Jonathan Dresner @ 9:09 pm Print

It’s been a while since I did some syllabus blogging, but the most interesting course I was going to teach last semester didn’t come through,1 so it’s been a little while since I taught a heavily revised or new course on Japan.
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  1. For reasons passing understanding, “US-East Asia Relations: Migration, Trade and War” failed to garner a single registrant. We have a strong military history component to our program, though, so I’m considering breaking it down further, and just doing a course on 20th century US-East Asian wars. It would be really fun if I could co-teach it with my US military historian colleague, but that’s new administrative territory for me. []

12/17/2010

When desperate to stabilize the currency

Filed under: — sayaka @ 9:06 am Print

I encountered these pages when I was flipping through a thick, unsorted bunch of materials regarding the industrial campaigns that the youth associations conducted in the immediate postwar period. Apparently this is a song promoted by the headquarters for the currency stabilization (通貨安定対策本部).  You can tell how desperate they were to persuade people to make savings in banks during the flaring inflation. The lyrics go (sorry for the rough translation):

What does that girl wait for at the counter of the bank? What are the bundles of bills that flow out every day doing? With whom are they now? Why are they coming home so late?

Bank Girl is alone, worried.

What does that girl look at during the lunch break? The bundles of cash that flooded into the city raise the price of what she wants. A shadow is cast over the shop window.

Bank Girl is alone and sad.

What does that girl do at the counter? The more cash flows out, the deeper the value goes down. Why do you not deposit that cash? The calculation does not make sense.

Bank Girl is alone, concerned.

Who does she wait for at the counter? The gentleman who always comes to deposit money. He is truly reliable — I wonder if he is single. I would love to see his bank statement.

Bank Girl is alone, longing for him.

12/7/2010

December 7, 1941, Pittsburg, Kansas

One of our graduate assistants came in recently with an old newspaper that her husband had found on a deconstruction job. Considering that it was, apparently, stored in a wall for decades, the December 7, 1941 Pittsburg Sun was in fairly good condition: brittle, but almost entirely intact and clear. I didn’t want to force the folds into a flatbed scanner – the paper clearly isn’t going to survive too much handling, and the next step is to show it to our archivist – so I took some pictures with my camera to share.

Interestingly, we got an email today indicating that the Governor has declared today a half-staff day, in honor of the anniversary, so consider this our contribution to the remembrance.
Pittsburg Sun 1941 December 7 Evening - Detail 1 - Front Page Headlines Army Arrives Pittsburg
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