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The Thought War
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About the Author

Barak Kushner currently lectures on modern Japanese history at the University of Cambridge.

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Completely individual and very interesting.... Kushner's book is, I think, the first to treat propaganda as a profession in wartime Japan. He follows it through its various stages and is particularly interested in its popular acceptance - wartime comedy, variety shows, how entertainers sought to bolster their careers by adopting the prewar message, which then filtered down into society and took hold. Using almost entirely primary materials, which have not before been translated, Barak re-creates the wartime world in which propaganda was the truth. In so doing, he has given us an eminently readable account of an unknown aspect of the war and has defined our understanding of it." - Japan Times

"[The Thought War] reveals a good deal more about Japan at war than has been available heretofore in Western languages.... This soundly researched book highlights the multiple, often ill-coordinated sources of Japan's wartime propaganda.... [It] should help considerably in advancing the urgent project of defining and assessing responsibility, not only for Japan but for all combatants, and not only for World War II but for all conflicts and modes of political violence." - Journal of Japanese Studies

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