Japan, culture and occupation

Japan and occupationProfessor Jan Bardsley of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has reviewed Adam Broinowski’s new book Cultural Responses to Occupation in Japan: The Performing Body during and after the Cold War (DOI: 10.1080/00472336.2016.1170188) for the Journal of Contemporary Asia.

The publisher states that the book “examines how the performing arts, and the performing body specifically, have shaped and been shaped by the political and historical conditions experienced in Japan during the Cold War and post-Cold War periods.”

Bardsley observes that “Throughout the book, Broinowski draws on an encyclopaedic knowledge of films, books and performance pieces, interpreting them through lengthy digressions into the theory of Artaud, Foucault and others, and with rich references to historical context.” She adds, however, that in her view, “the density of descriptive detail overwhelms the author’s opportunity to elaborate a clear argument.”

She adds, however, that “specialists interested in one strand of Butoh’s evolution and in
viewing occupation as a continuing condition involving global dynamics beyond Japan and
the US will appreciate Broinowski’s numerous insights and firsthand experiences.”


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