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Baseball in Occupied Japan

US Postwar Cultural Policy

Takeshi Tanikawa

ISBN: 9784814003419

pub. date: 02/21

Publisher: Kyoto University Press & Trans Pacific Press

  • Price : JPY 3,200 (with tax: JPY 3,520)
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The first post-war Japanese professional baseball game was held on November 23, 1945, just 100 days after the end of World War II. During the occupation of Japan, GHQ sought to suppress and regulate budo (Japanese martial arts) as a relic of Japanese pre-war militarism but encouraged the playing and watching of baseball games as an effective teamwork- and sportsmanship-building tool. Baseball in Occupied Japan examines the revival of Japanese baseball in the occupation era, focusing on how the U.S. government carried out its cultural diplomacy policy within the arena of sports. The chapters hone in on various means by which the U.S. via GHQ controlled and fostered sports in Japan as a form of cultural diplomacy, including the propagation of the image of Jackie Robinson as an example of American unification, the San Francisco Seals’ tour of Japan, the promotion of sports through CIE films and the prohibition of martial arts such as kendo.


Takeshi Tanikawa is Visiting Professor of Film History in the Graduate School of Political Science, Waseda University. For nearly three decades, he has been a freelance cinema journalist and film critic, publishing more than thirty books and winning the prestigious 1st Kyoto Film Culture Award.


Author’s Biography

1 The Revival of ‘Yakyu’ and the Japan-U.S. Relationship
2 Sports Industry Reform Under the U.S. Occupation
3 The Suppression of Kendo
4 Promotion of Sports Through CIE Films
5 The Use of the Image of Jackie Robinson in VOA Radio Programs
6 The Use of the Image of Jackie Robinson in the Print Media
7 The San Francisco Seals and Coca-Cola

1. Number of Film Showings and Viewers of Eight Baseball-Related
CIE Films (Prefectural Monthly Report from Jan. 1950 to Dec. 1950)
2. Number of Film Showings and Viewers of Five Sports-Related
CIE Films (Prefectural Monthly Report from Jan. 1950 to Dec. 1950)
3. Educational Film Attendance Report of Fukushima Prefecture
(June to Nov. 1950)