Hiroshima’s Shadow

ISBN 13: 9780963058744

Hiroshima’s Shadow

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9780963058744: Hiroshima’s Shadow
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Essays and memoirs discuss the decision to use the atomic bomb against Japan in 1945

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Review:

...an enormously valuable and long overdue collection that it is hoped will remain on researchers' and reporters' shelves for years to come. -- The Los Angeles Times Sunday Book Review, Greg Mitchell

As we close out this millennium, there is little doubt that the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II may well emerge as the most debated event of the century. "Hiroshima's Shadow," which painstakingly retraces the steps leading to America's decision to use atomic weapons against innocent Japanese civilians and unflinchingly questions the politics behind the choice, is a stunning and unforgettable collection of essays and memoirs that emerges as the most comprehensive work written to date on the subject. Edited by Kai Bird, an author and contributing editor for The Nation, and Lawrence Lifschultz, who has written extensively on Asian and European history for international publications, this sobering and impressive book had its impetus for publication in the Smithsonian Institution's cancellation, under significant political pressure, of its original Enola Gay exhibit to mark the 50th anniversary of the bombings. A significant part of the research documented in "Hiroshima's Shadow" was the nucleus of the censored exhibit, and its cancellation drew condemnation from many sources, including the Organization of American Historians. The printing of this book is a triumphant victory for the many whose voices were untimely silenced and for those who fought for their opposition to the bombings to be heard, such as the 155 Manhattan Project scientists who appealed in vain to the Truman administration. Included are some key historical documents, some published for the first time, the heart-wrenching testimony of survivors of the horrific bombing, the reflections of independent writers and intellectuals from Albert Camus to Mahatma Gandhi, and the haunting, worth-more-than-a-thousand-words photographs of Yosuke Yamahata, the Japanese photographer who captured the devastation in Nagasaki the morning after it was bombed. The volume concludes with the 1996 opinion of the World Court declaring the use of nuclear weapons as a violation of international and humanitarian law. This is imperative reading for students of history and politics, as well as anyone who believes that if we do not learn from the past, we will, in fact, be condemned to repeat it. -- From Independent Publisher

One virtue of Hiroshima's Shadow ... is that it does more than recall the agony of the victims. It is focused, instead, on something subtler: the long-lasting moral damage to those who choose deliberately to obliterate hundreds of thousands of civilian lives at a single stroke, and then try to justify that choice.... What happened to the Japanese is well-known. What happened to us deserves the scrutiny that this book provides.... Hiroshima's Shadow is maddeningly repetitious.... It is at once enormous in range and obsessive in detail. But there is a real reward in winnowing from these accounts the revealing--and often shocking--comments both of major contributors to the official legend and of their critics. -- The Nation, H. Jack Geiger

From Kirkus Reviews:

An exhaustive, controversial, and moving volume that has its origins in the Smithsonian Institution's cancellation of a planned exhibition in 199495 of the Enola Gay, the plane that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. To be included in the exhibition's script were several scholarly studies and a number of historical documents that questioned the military necessity and moral legitimacy of that act. The book, then, moves along two paths: a painstaking analysis of how and why the bomb came to be used, and a provocative deliberation on what the editors (Bird, a contributing editor of the Nation, and Lifschultz, former South Asia correspondent of the Far Eastern Economic Review) term the ``pathology of denial'' in the US surrounding our use of the bomb. While voices in support of the bombing of Hiroshima are to be found here, most of the contributors in various ways attempt to debunk the myths and assumptions that have built up concerning this act. The first part of the book offers selections by present-day historians. The second part is devoted to essays written shortly after the bombing. Part three focuses on the Smithsonian controversy itself. Part four presents chilling first-person accounts of the day Hiroshima died. The final part is devoted to historical documents, memos, and diary entries of those who participated in the decision to use the bomb and also public statements pleading against this decision. As a century of extreme barbarism draws to a close, the editors ask us to think critically about the US contribution to this barbarism, the unleashing upon the world of atomic and nuclear weapons. Their purpose is not to apportion blame, to point fingers, but rather to allow us to look at our history and perhaps gain what is often so elusive: wisdom. (8 b&w photos) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780963058737: Hiroshima's Shadow (Writings on the denial of history & the Smithsonian controversy)

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ISBN 10:  0963058738 ISBN 13:  9780963058737
Publisher: Pamphleteers Pr, 1998
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9780965064927: Hiroshima's Shadow

The Pa..., 1998
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9780963058768: Hiroshima's Shadow: Writings on the Denial of History and the Smithsonian Controversy: 002

Pamphl..., 1996
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