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We all have memories. Yet some are lost whereas others, however mundane, become celebrated and grow to become a part of the national, collective memory. Why and how do people celebrate, lose, or recall memories in their histories? As an aspiring historian, I am seeking to find answers to this question in the context of the history of the Japanese POWs in the Soviet Union and Mongolia after WWII. As my research proceeds, I have become more cautious of the dominance of the collective historical narrative in contrast to the naive yet resilient individual memories: at least in this case, the memories of the POWs were appropriated and reworked into convenient narratives that served national interests: articulating this process is at the heart of my research.

My invitation to visit Nagasaki this summer.