Examining major human rights related policies in Japan during the United Nations Decade for Human Rights Education (1995-2004), in this paper I attempt to analyse government approaches to human rights education on several societal levels, with particular regard to junior high school education. After a brief introduction to the rationale of sampling and category development I will present a tentative assessment of teaching/learning contents in exemplary chapters of two widely used textbooks for Civic Education and Moral Education.
Our contemporary international human rights discourse is said to be dominated by the West, and accordingly the human rights timeline in the Civic Education textbook originates with the Magna Carta. Considering the diversity of timeline projects and notions of human rights, what can be gained from expanding Japan’s human rights discourse to include for instance the so-called "kakekomi-dera"?
All participants are invited to join my quest for suitable assessment criteria and to discuss related issues such as values education and social discourse.
Bettina C. Rabe is a doctoral student at Heidelberg University.