In the decade leading up to the attack on Pearl Harbor, at a time when Japan was expanding its influence in Asia, several Japanese institutions set about trying to convince Americans to support Tokyo’s plans and ambitions for China. This book seeks to analyze the original publications produced by these organizations and explores the methods used by the Japanese to influence American attitudes and policy.
Four organizations active during the 1930s, the South Manchuria Railway Company, the America-Japan Society, the Foreign Affairs Association of Japan, and the Japan Pacific Association, were particularly instrumental in targeting the US. This book argues that they routinely used specific terminology to appeal to Americans, such as 'New Deal,' 'Manifest Destiny,' and 'Open Door.' Furthermore, the Japanese claimed that only they could meet the challenge of the growing communist threat, while their development programs would bring peace and prosperity to China. Nevertheless, American policy was not significantly altered by Japanese propaganda efforts, as documents from the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt reveal that the president continued to prepare the U.S. for war with Japan long before Pearl Harbour.
Examining original Japanese English-language propaganda sources from the 1920s and 1930s, this book will be of huge interest to historians of Japan, China, the US and World War II more broadly.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction 2. The "New Deal" in Manchuria: The South Manchuria Railway Company’s Efforts to Win American Approval 3. The America-Japan Society and the Sino-Japanese Conflict 4. The Foreign Affairs Association of Japan 5. The Japan Pacific Association 6. Conclusion: Propaganda, Anti-Communism, and the Impact of the War on American Policy
June Grasso is Associate Professor of Social Sciences at Boston University's College of General Studies, USA. Her recent publications include the Fifth Edition of Modernization and Revolution in China (2018).