Monday, December 02, 2002

About 12 hours before my last message . . .

. . . Mr. Saburo Ienaga who had fought against the "textbook screening" for decades passed away.

I have just seen the news.

Although this news apparently seems not to concern me so much who had used "Japanese" textbook only among the textbooks officially approved by the Ministry of Education when I was in junior high . . . but actually I had studied his "Shin-Nihonshi"(New Japanese History) when I was in senior high !

My senior high teacher chose Mr. Saburo Ienaga's "Shin-Nihonshi" as the very last textbook though "Japanese language" class, which was the only one class went on in Japanese, mainly dealt with (Japanese) literature !

It interested me much that the book, which referred to some incidents in detail, couldn't get authorized by the Ministry of Education, and I was glad I could study Japanese history in Japanese since all the classes of Japanese history and Japanese society I had were in English until then.

But what attracted me most was the author's character, which appeared in the contents !

It's like, he often used the expression " --- deserves special mention " !

It might not be good as a textbook the book has a specific character . . . but I felt humane warmth - passion "to teach children" in it !

"History" was the only one unfavorite subject for me but that book was an exception.

I wonder how far his prayer - of never making same faults and wars again - would reach. It's the theme which becomes more and more important from now on, even if Mr. Ienaga passed away ! ! !
I think it was really good I could read it at that time !
Seems like "Shin-Nihonshi" has been published after modified so many secitons ... I think it's just okay if those who want to read it could read it, even if it's not distributed in the school !

The story about this book will continue to spread with his messages like I'm telling you right now, no matter what regulation it might have.

(NOTES by Nuuk) - some related articles
Saburo Ienaga Dies; Fought Japan's Censors (AP/ - 12/02/02)
Progressive historian Ienaga dies (The Japan Times - 12/02/02)