Field Trip to Peace Osaka

Oct 10, 2013 (Thu.)

On Saturday October 5th, almost 30 students accompanied by Professor Paul Scott visited Peace Osaka. This visit is always scheduled to take place one week before the trip to Hiroshima. There are many peace museums in Japan and all of them deal with war and the construction of memory. What is included in the museum, how the narrative is wrapped, and even what is left out all must be examined and analyzed.Peace Osaka is housed in a modern facility. One walks in from Osaka Castle Park and the first floor exhibition is dedicated to the bombings of Osaka. Walking downstairs there is a replica of a typical room in a house at war - windows blacked out and a shelter/trench nearby. On the adjacent wall is a draft notice (a red envelope) as well as thousand stitch haramaki. All these clearly show a community at war. The ground floor has an exhibition room dedicated to the China War, Greater East Asia War and WW2. Walking around the exhibition one sees a progression that goes Hiroshima, Nagasaki and then pictures of the European Holocaust. This raises a series of interesting poignant questions. We also saw an animated video - The Sea of Fire Osaka. The animation illustrated the cost of war at the individual level. On this trip, Mr. Oshimo Isamu came along. He was a ten year old boy at the time of the bombing of Osaka and shared his experiences with the students. We thank him for taking the time out to join us.