1st Edition

A Nation of a Hundred Million Idiots A Social History of Japanese Television, 1953 - 1973

By Jayson Makoto Chun Copyright 2007
    372 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    368 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book offers a history of Japanese television audiences and the popular media culture that television helped to spawn. In a comparatively short period, the television industry helped to reconstruct not only postwar Japanese popular culture, but also the Japanese social and political landscape. During the early years of television, Japanese of all backgrounds, from politicians to mothers, debated the effects on society. The public discourse surrounding the growth of television revealed its role in forming the identity of postwar Japan during the era of high-speed growth (1955-1973) that saw Japan transformed into an economic power and one of the world's top exporters of television programming.

    Part 1: Introduction to Japanese Television Culture  Introduction  Part 2: The History of Japanese Television Culture  1. Prewar Roots of Japanese Television Culture: Imperial Culture, Media Culture, and Radio  2. Postwar Media Culture and Japanese Encounters with TV  3. Pro Wrestling and Body Slams: Early TV as a Mass Event  4. Transforming the Nation: TV Takes Root in Japan (1957-1963)  Part 3: Japanese Interactions with Television  5. Television Spreads to the Countryside  6. Intellectuals Debate TV: Oya's "Hundred Million Idiots" and Kato's "Television Culture"  7. Protecting the Children and Cleaning Up TV  8. Politics as Spectacle: Parades, Pageantry and Protests  9. Anpo Redux: University Riots and a Hostage Crisis  10. America in Japanese Television: Family Dramas and Cowboys  11. After the American Boom: Japanese TV Gains its Independence  Part 4: The Meaning of the Japanese Television Nation  Epilogue: Fractured Television Nation 


    Jayson Makoto Chun, raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, is an assistant professor of history at the University of Hawai'i - West O'ahu.