Thomas R. Graham

University of New Hampshire

Political Science


Mentor: Dr. Allen B. Linden - Associate Professor of History

Fifty Years of Japan-bashing

My research this summer dealt with the current trend in America towards anti-Japanese public opinion; this ill sentiment has manifested itself in scathing statements made by prominent U.S. politicians and businessmen - the term used to denote this behavior is "Japan-bashing." My dissertation seeks to prove that "Japan-bashing" is not a new phenomenon but a prejudicial occurrence that has plagued the Japanese since the mid-1800s, when Japanese immigrants first came to the U.S.

My research focuses upon the fifty-one year time period from Japan's attack upon Pearl Harbor to the present-day thereby looking at the "Japan-bashing" that affected both Japanese Americans and their counterparts from the island nation. This examination is divided into three parts. First, the economic relations between the U.S. and Japan are covered. Second, the philosophical differences between the two nations are compared. Lastly, the racial tensions between Japan and the U.S. are examined.

After consideration of these points of dispute, the notion is put forth that both nations are simply victims of mutual misunderstanding and misconception.

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