Added: June 4, 2016 – Last updated: June 4, 2016


Author: Santa Sorrenti

Title: Our Only Voice

Subtitle: The Korean 'Comfort Women' & Surviving the Noise of Nationalism

Thesis: Bachelor Thesis, Leiden University

Advisor: Ksenia Robbe

Year: May 2015

Pages: 28pp.

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 20th Century | Asian History: Japanese History, Korean History | Types: Forced Prostitution / "Comfort Women"; Types: Wartime Rape / Asia-Pacific War


Link: Leiden Repository: Digital Repositories for Leiden University and institutes affiliated to the university (Free Access)


Abstract: »The ‘Comfort Women’ issue is an ongoing discourse that continues to shape the unstable relations between Japan and Korea. Since the 1990's, Korean women who were coerced into sexual slavery by Japan during World War II have come forward to fight for recognition of the war crimes committed by Japan. The contestation of various nationalist historical remembering however has sidelined feminist issues regarding the brutality women faced in order to prioritize state nationalism. This article extends McClintock’s critique of the term ‘post-colonialism’ and historical linearity to analyze the restraints of a singular embedded history that does not allow space for other historical experiences to be legitimized. This article examines how the state, organizations, and 'comfort women' survivors propagate a specific historical rhetoric in the redress movement against Japan where they are constrained to a post-colonial ‘condition’ that does not look beyond the nation nor takes into consideration the harm done to women’s’ bodies themselves.« (Source: Leiden Repository)


  The Battle for (Her)story (p. 3)
  Chapter 1: Contextualizing the 'Comfort Women' Issue: Perspectives between Japan & Korea (p. 5)
  Chapter 2: Theoretical & Methodological Frameworks (p. 7)
    2.A: A Theoretical Approach (p. 7)
    2.B: Methodological Approaches (p. 9)
  Chapter 3: How Could You Do This to Us! Bodies of the Nation & Icons of Post-colonial Violence (p. 10)
  Chapter 4: Time to Celebrate? Transnational Feminism & the Comfort Women Issue (p. 20)
  How Much Power do 'Comfort Women' have over their own Historical Remembering? (p. 24)
  Bibliography (p. 26)

Wikipedia: History of Asia: History of Japan, History of Korea | Prostitution: Forced prostitution / Comfort women | Types of rape: Wartime sexual violence | War, Pacific War / Japanese war crimes