Essay about Changes in Japanese Culture

Essay about Changes in Japanese Culture

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Throughout “Hiroshima” by John Heresy, the readers are gradually exposed to Japanese culture through each of the six survivors, regardless of the survivors' nationality, as they stitch their lives back together after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on August 9, 1945. Japanese-style hospitals are quite different in comparison to other hospitals, gradually reforming through the book. As a Japanese, you were happy to die for your Emperor and country as shown in Tanimoto's letter to an American and in the survivors. Japanese had a resistance toward foreigners due to the war, however, after the bombing, the Japanese accepted those they rejected. Through these Japanese customs, the audience gains further understanding of the influence the atomic bombing had on Japan and their customs and traditions.

Needles. Drugs. X-rays. Machinery. No beds. Room enough for you and your family. Not your typical hospital these days. The Japanese-style hospitals were for patients' mental and physical health. In Dr. Masakazu Fuji's hospital, there were “thirty rooms for thirty patients and their kinsfolk,” so the families could reassure and strengthen the ill patients. It's believed that if a ill patient was confined from loved ones, then the “patient would be miserable indeed.” In addition, Dr. Terufumi Sasaki worked in a more modern hospital with rooms only enough for patients. After the bombing took place, hospitals were in shambles with no electricity or running water. As survivors flooded hospitals with radiation sickness and time went on, hospitals began to redevelop to please economy and society. Dr. Sasaki begins to practice in his wife's home, eventually building an add-on and running a hospital for the elderly. Dr. Fuji built a new clinic “on...


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...tals, obligation toward Japan, and xenophobia in Japan. Throughout the stories of each survivor met in “Hiroshima”, hospitals and medicine play a key part in their lives after the atomic bomb. Through Dr. Fuji and Dr. Sasaki, the readers take notice of the advancement in technology of medicine and hospitals. The Emperor of Japan plays a significant role in the restructuring of Japan itself, being seen as a symbol that all that Japan stands for. The Japanese loyalty toward their country and their Emperor changed due to the atomic bomb, dying for their country and having “a pride in the way they and their fellow-survivors had stood up to a dreadful ordeal.” Japanese were increasingly xenophobic as the war continued. However, after the ending of the war, the attitude toward foreigners changed.


Works Cited

Hersey, John. Hiroshima. New York: A.A. Knopf, 1985. Print.

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