Night in the American Village: Women in the Shadow of the U.S. Military Bases in Okinawa

Item # 157331.

By Akemi Johnson.

At the southern end of the Japanese archipelago lies Okinawa, host to a vast complex of U.S. military bases. A legacy of World War II, these bases have been a fraught issue in Japan for decades—with tensions exacerbated by the often volatile relationship between islanders and the military, especially after the brutal rape of a twelve-year-old girl by three servicemen in the 1990s.

But the situation is more complex than it seems. Journalist Akemi Johnson takes readers deep into the “border towns” surrounding the bases—a world where cultural and political fault lines compel individuals, both Japanese and American, to continually renegotiate their own identities. Focusing on the women there, she follows the complex fallout of the murder of an Okinawan woman by an ex–U.S. serviceman in 2016 and speaks to protesters, to women who date and marry American men and groups that help them when problems arise, and to Okinawans whose family members survived World War II.

Thought-provoking and timely, Night in the American Village is a vivid look at the enduring wounds of U.S.-Japanese history and the cultural and sexual politics of the American military empire. Hardbound: 336 pp.



Collections: Books & Media, What's New

Type: book


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