On August 15th, Yasukuni Shrine is the scene of political protests where Japan's history and future are challenged by both right and left.
This presentation, based on participant observation, highlights the plurality of grassroots political activity occurring over the past two years around Yasukuni Shine and the greater Kudan memorial district. Specifically, the focus is on three citizen's groups: one Christian based, one on the right and one on the left. The "Yasukuni Issues" are often not confined spatially or chronologically. However, the conduct of the three groups provides an opportunity to clearly view the reactions engendered by state sponsored political action.
The purpose of this presentation is to: first, analyze the frames the three groups select in either protecting or protesting the shrine; second, highlight the mechanisms and processes utilized to express the frame; and third, examine the implications grassroots political action has for Japanese democracy.
Brian Masshard is a PhD Candidate (ABD) at the University of Hawaii,
Department of Political Science. He has co-authored "Election Posters in Japan" (Japan
Forum, November 2002; with Jonathan Lewis).