ICJS Event: Korea Japan Group - Evening on the Politics of World War II History in Europe versus Asia

With reference to the roles of civil society and public opinion.

Wednesday, April 5, 2006
1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Temple University, Japan Campus, Azabu Hall Room 212/213 (Access)
Open to the general public. Dinner and drinks will be provided for ¥1,500. RSVP is recommended.


  • Dr. Lily Gardner Feldman, senior fellow, The American Institute of Contemporary German Studies
  • Andrew Horvat, visiting scholar, the International Center for the Study of Historical Reconciliation at Tokyo Keizai University
  • Dr. Sven Saaler, The University of Tokyo, Graduate School or Arts and Sciences, author of "Politics, Memory and Public Opinion. The History Textbook Controversy and Japanese Society."

About the Event

How many sister-city ties are there between Japan and South Korea? The answer: 88. How many between Germany and France? 2,200 at last count. How many joint cultural events took place between Japan and South Korea in 2005, the year of Japan-Korea Friendship? According to the official website, about 400. How many similar joint efforts take place between Germany and France in any given year? 7,000.

Dr. Lily Gardner Feldman of the American Institute of Contemporary German Studies at Johns Hopkins University argues that active European civil society organizations were a key element in overcoming a negative past in Europe since the end of World War II.

On April 5 Dr. Gardner Feldman will talk about her work on the various ways in which civil society has interacted with governments in promoting reconciliation.

Andrew Horvat, who dealt on a daily basis for six years with Japanese civil society organizations as Japan representative of a leading American foundation will talk about the many challenges -- legal and financial -- facing Japanese NGOs especially those in the advocacy field.

Dr. Sven Saaler, a historian and author will compare public perceptions of a negative past in Germany and Japan.

This event is made possible thanks to the support of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and the International Center for the Study of Historical Reconciliation at Tokyo Keizai University.

About ICJS

The Institute of Contemporary Japanese Studies (ICJS) is an organization dedicated to fostering study and research on various topics related to contemporary Japan and Asia.