Japanese Culture Through Film
War Morals: Japan vs. America
I have learned a lot while taking this Japanese culture through film class. I never really truly knew how the Japanese were in everyday life. While taking this class I learned a lot of interesting things that I am glad I learned. One of the main things I learned was how dedicated Japanese are to their country and to their beliefs, which I found out that the majority of Japanese people share quite similar beliefs on a lot of things. Such as religion and their pride for their country. While watching the movie “Letters to Iwo Jima”, I really started to see how much pride the Japanese would put into war and how dedicated they would be to meet what their Lord demanded from them, which is bushido, which plays a big concept in my paper. In my paper I am going to describe how Japanese war is like compared to America war. Even though both countries have some same beliefs when it comes to war, I strongly believe that being a part of the Japanese army and going to war for Japan is more intense than being a part of the American army and going to war for USA.
The one thing that really sticks out about a difference I learned is the outlook Japan has on war, it is different than the outlook America has on war. A reason being is because Japan really holds on to their past and they feel its right to keep traditions going unlike Americans. To me I don’t think it is bad for Japanese to hold on to their past because it really shows a lot about their pride for their country. But times were different way back in the day and something’s were way more intense as in, Japanese beliefs and being in the Japanese army. The one thing that Japanese people did during war that is a big difference is committing suicide. Japanese committed suicide during war in times when they felt like they were going to be captured even though they haven’t yet. They would not even try to fight their way out of it like most Americans would do but they don’t do it out of fear, they do it out of pride for their country and for their Lord. Because as our book states “Loyalty was thus a distinctive feature of feudal society in Japan: the relationship between lord and vassal was called that of “obligations and service” (pg.45). Which shows why they have the pride they do. They grow up with the belief that they owe their lord something and that they should live a life that is repaying to their lord. Thus being the reason why Japanese people are more accepting of suicide in certain situations like in war, and are edged on by scout leaders, which I found would be quite stressful if you are not accepting of death. But as a fellow American we do not view suicide as a way to be faithful to your country but rather being a coward. In times during war for Americans, they are taught to keep fighting and never give up because you could still make a difference. Which I believe in because it makes more sense to keep fighting for your life rather than just giving up and killing yourself. You may say, “Hey it seems harder to keep fighting rather than just killing yourself,” which brings up a good point. Because since Japanese people are used to the way their history was and so on they are able to commit suicide, but I guarantee that most American soldiers would never be able to just kill themselves.
The average age of a kid in WW2 for Japan was around 24 years old and consisted of ages between 19 to 45 and even had kids as young as 15 joining the army, but even though the age went up to about 45 years old most Japanese soldiers were on the younger end of the age scale. During WW2 Japan constructed a part of their army that was called the Kamikazes, people who would commit an honorable suicide while taking out big groups of an enemy army. An article from pwencycl.kgbudge.com/ states “In the autumn of 1943 the growing manpower shortage led the Japanese to order the induction of all male students over the