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Interview with Alisa Freedman, Research Award Recipient 2019

Each year, the recipients of the 20th Century Japan Research Awards visit the University of Maryland to use the materials in the Gordon W. Prange Collection.  They often spend a week or more on campus.  They are interviewed at the end of their stay about their research experience.

One of the two recipients of the award for 2018-2019 is Alisa Freedman, Professor of Japanese Literature, Cultural Studies, and Gender at the University of Oregon. Her research topic is, “New Women for Democratic Japan: Rise of the Japanese University Student​ in the Occupation Era.” 

We asked Professor Freedman the following interview questions:

  1. How did you learn about the research award, and why did you apply for it?
  2. What motivated you to focus on this research topic?
  3. Which materials in the Prange Collection left the biggest impression on you?
  4. How would you describe the research experience at the University of Maryland Libraries?
  5. Do you have any suggestions for fellow researchers using the collection?

Curious about how she responded?  Click the document below!


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Newly Acquired Secondary Sources on the Occupation (2018)

We have recently acquired the following secondary sources on the Occupation period that were published in 2018. Also see our acquisitions in 2014, 2015 (Part I), and 2015 (Part II), 2016, and 2017.



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A Talk by Timothy Smith : Clean Minds, Messy Realities: Shifting Trends in Contemporary Tenrikyō

Mr. Timothy Smith, a Ph.D Candidate at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and recipient of a 20th Century Japan Research Award, will give a talk on “Clean Minds, Messy Realities: Shifting Trends in Contemporary Tenrikyō” on Tuesday, October 8, 2018, 12:30-1:30pm in 2120 Francis Scott Key Hall, University of Maryland.

The event is free and open to the public. This event is co-sponsored by the University of Maryland Libraries and the Nathan and Jeanette Miller Center for Historical Studies. Lunch will be served. Please RSVP to 301-405-4299 or  millercenter@umd.edu to reserve your lunch.

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Newly Acquired Secondary Sources on the Occupation (2017)

We have recently acquired the following secondary sources on the Occupation period that were published in 2017. Also see our acquisitions in 2014, 2015 (Part I), and 2015 (Part II), and 2016.



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An Interview with Raymond Vernon from the Marlene J. Mayo Oral Histories

This post is the tenth in a series featuring interviews from the Marlene J. Mayo Oral Histories.  Currently, 29 of the oral history transcripts are available online.  The remainder are available onsite in the Maryland Room, the reading room for Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Maryland.  For other featured oral histories, see this page

Happy birthday, Raymond Vernon!

Raymond Vernon was interviewed by Marlene Mayo, then Professor of History at the University of Maryland, on November 1, 1979 as part of her project to document the stories, both personal and professional, of Americans who served in Allied Occupied Japan.

Raymond Vernon (September 1, 1913 – August 25, 1999) worked at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) from 1935 to 1946, where he wrote Civil Affairs Guides for the Military on Japan’s capital and securities markets.  While employed by the SEC, Vernon was sent to Japan to write a report on anti-trust and de-concentration of economic power with Corwin Edwards.  Soon after his return to the U.S. in 1946, he began working for the State Department. He was a member of the Marshall Plan team, worked on the development of the International Monetary Fund, and helped negotiate the inclusion of Japan in the General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). In 1959, he began teaching at Harvard University, where he conducted research on multinational corporations and the international economy.  He was regarded by some as the father of globalization.

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Raising a Child: Then and Now (Part V – Raising a “Good” Baby)

[This is a guest post written by Risa Tanji, a Student Assistant in Special Collections & University Archives, who works primarily in the Prange Collection.  This is the last post of the series. See also the Introduction, Part I, Part II, Part III, and Part IV.]

The meaning of good parenting has evolved over time. During the early post-war years in Japan, parents were focused on raising a strong, independent child, while parents today seem to be more interested in fulfilling their babies’ needs.

Akanbo no sodatekata (Prange Call No. 2019-0038) front cover

In his book, The Common Sense of Child Rearing/赤ん坊の育て方 (Prange Call No. 2019-0038), Dr. Toshio Tanaka strongly suggested that mothers cuddle their children only when necessary. He believed that when the mother-baby “skinship” was excessive, the baby would develop an excessive craving for hugs and piggy-back-rides and would become a difficult child.

He also advised that mothers should only be with their child when breastfeeding, and that children would be happier to see their mother only at certain times of the day. Now, many mothers feel that holding their child as much as possible contributes to the child’s well being. 

The Common Sense of Child Rearing also included baby sleep advice. Tanaka strongly advised against parents sleeping with their babies.  He was concerned that the baby would want to nurse all night — this would disrupt the breastfeeding schedule — and neither the baby nor the parents would get enough sleep.  

Today, there are disputes among parents and researchers about the family bed. Some prefer putting their baby in a crib, for fear of rolling over and crushing them.  Others are in favor of the family bed, wishing to maximize their time with their children to foster a closer relationship.

According to Dr. Tanaka, one of the best ways to gauge babies’ overall health is by analyzing how much they cry.  Tanaka stated that healthy babies rarely cry, never regurgitate their milk, and refuse to be held by their parents. In contrast, unhealthy babies cry often and refuse to be away from their mother. This notion is in contrast to the famous Japanese proverb, “Children who cry will grow.” Now, many parents understand that crying is a primary form of communication for a baby, and most parents would be more concerned if their baby never cried and rejected their embrace.



  1. Awaya, Shinobu. (2014). “Hito No Kenko Wa Taijiki Kara Kimaru : DOHaD Setsu (Seijinbyo Taijiki Hassho Kigensetsu) No Dai-Ichininsha Fukuoka Hideoki Sensei Ni Kiku” [People’s Health Is Determined During Their Fetal Period : Delivered by Dr. Hideoki Fukuoka, The Leading Theorist of the DOHaD (Developmental Origins of Health and Disease) Hypothesis] (Daiokishin, Kankyo Horumon Taisaku Kokumin Kaigi Nyusureta Dai 87-go [Dioxin and Environmental Hormone-Preventing National Congress Newsletter, vol. 87]). [online]http://kokumin-kaigi.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/fukuoka871.pdf. Accessed March 27, 2019.
  2. Chiba-ken Ishikai. (2010). “Kodomo Sodanshitsu : Bonyu Ikujichu No Byoki Ni Tsuite” [Counseling Room on Children : On Diseases During The Breastfeeding Period] (Mireniamu Dai 35-go [Millenium vol. 35]). [online]https://www.chiba.med.or.jp/general/millennium/pdf/millennium35_14.pdf. Accessed March 12, 2019.
  3. Ehime Seikyo Byoin. (2002). “Jikachudoku (Asetonkessei Otosho, Shukisei Otosho)” [Autointoxication (Acetonic Vomiting, Cyclic Vomiting)]. [online]http://www.e-seikyo-hp.jp/medical/pediatrics/6.pdf. Accessed February 26, 2019.
  4. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomics. (2019). “Iryoyo Iyakuhin no Yakko Bunrui” [Therapeutic Category of Drugs in Japan]. [online]https://www.genome.jp/kegg-bin/get_htext?jp08301+D00142. Accessed April 3, 2019.
  5. Moriya, Mitsuo. (1949). “Ikuji Shinrigaku” [Child Raising Psychology]. Kyoto City: Usui Shobo. Prange Call Number 2019-0019.
  6. Nakabachi, Fujiro. (1948). “Byoki O Sasenu Shin Ikujiho” [New Child-Raising Methods to Raise an Illness-Free Child]. Tokyo: Fujin Tosho Shuppansha. Prange Call Number 2019-0022.
  7. Ota, Yuriko. (2016). “Jyozu Na Oyatsu No Torikata” [Good Ways to Eat Snacks]. (Kodomo No Mikaku O Hagukumu Shokuji No Hinto Vol.06 [Hints To Nurture Children’s Palate Through Meals Vol.06]). [online]https://shoku.hapiku.com/column/004/mikaku-006/. Accessed April 14, 2019.
  8. Saitama Josanin. (2009). “‘Nyuyoji No Atopisei Hifuen” No Benkyokai Ni Ittekimashita!” [We Went to a Study Session on “Atopic Dermatitis For Infants”!] (Saitama Josanin Nyusureta No.1 [Saitama OB/GYN Newsletter No. 1]). [online]http://saitamajosanin.com/saitama-josanin_newsNO1.pdf. Accessed February 26, 2019.
  9. Seiiku Shikkan Kokufukuto Jisedai Ikusei Kiban Kenkyu Jigyo. (2013). “Nyuyoji Shintai Hatsuiku Hyoka Manyuaru : Nyuyoji Shintai Hatsuiku Chosa No Tokeigakuteki Kaiseki To Sono Shuho Oyobi Rikatsuyo Ni Kansuru Kenkyu” [Manual For Evaluating Infant Somatic Growth : Research on Statistical Analysis of Infant Somatic Growth Investigation and the Methods and Application of the Study]. [online]https://www.niph.go.jp/soshiki/07shougai/hatsuiku/index.files/katsuyou.pdf. Accessed February 24, 2019.
  10. Shufu No Tomosha Henshukyoku. (1948). “Akachan No Shokuji To Oyatsu” [Babies’ Meals and Snacks]. Tokyo: Shufu No Tomosha. Prange Call Number 2019-0012.
  11. Tanaka, Toshio. (1946). “Akanbo No Sodatekata” [How to Raise a Baby]. Fukuoka City: Tanaka Shonika Iin. Prange Call Number 2019-0038.
  12. World Health Organization. (2008). “Ninshinchu Oyobi Jyunyuki No Shokuhin Anzen To Eiyo” [Food Safety and Nutrition During Pregnancy and Lactation Period] (Kokusai Shokuhini Anzen Tokyoku Nettowaku Information Note No. 3 [INFOSAN: International Food Safety Authorities Network Information Note No. 3]). [online]https://www.chiba.med.or.jp/general/millennium/pdf/millennium35_14.pdf. Accessed March 28, 2019.
  13. Yamamoto, Yasumichi. (1948). “Ikuji No Joshiki” [The Common Sense of Child Rearing]. Tokyo: Sobunsha. Prange Call Number 2019-0013.
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Raising a Child: Then and Now (Part IV – Snacks and Weaning Foods)

[This is a guest post written by Risa Tanji, a Student Assistant in Special Collections & University Archives, who works primarily in the Prange Collection.  See Introduction, Part I, Part II, and Part III.]

As babies grow, parents begin to introduce baby foods and snacks to their diet to familiarize them with the way that adults eat meals. The type of foods that were eaten as snacks and the way of integrating snack times into children’s schedules differed slightly between the early post World War II period in Japan and now.  

I compared the information in two books, Babies’ Meals and Snacks/赤ちゃんの食事とお八つ by Shufu no Tomosha Henshukyoku (Prange Call No. 2019-0012) and The Common Sense of Child Rearing/育児の常識 by Dr. Yasumichi Yamamoto (Prange Call No. 2019-0013), with information from Dr. Yuriko Ota, a registered dietitian in Japan, as a representative example of current Japanese perspectives on this topic.

Babies’ Meals and Snacks listed specific examples of snacks such as sweet potato and bread pudding, creams made from various vegetables or nuts, jelly, apple otoshiyaki (traditional Japanese pan-fried cookies), and apple starch gruel. According to Dr. Ota, the ideal snacks for babies, especially for those who are one to two years old, are those that compensate for nutrients that are generally harder for babies to get through their meals.

Some dishes, such as starch gruel (suggested to be served hot), did not seem to be particularly appetizing, but perhaps was advised more for its nutritional value and vibrant color. There were many potato-based snacks, such as sweet potato tarts and sweet-potato jelly, that are still commonly eaten today.  All of the snacks in the book were homemade, and considering how time-consuming they were to make, we can be assume that store-bought snacks were uncommon and/or unaffordable for many families.

Dr. Yamamoto stressed the importance of snacks for children.  He suggested that children be given a snack twice a day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, until about age five or six.  Many scientists today would agree that snacking is important for children’s growth, because children use more energy than adults.  Dr. Ota, however, suggests that one snack a day is sufficient for children over three years old. 

The “emotional sensitivity” that Dr. Yamamoto repeatedly showed concern about was mentioned in this section of his book as well. He believed that if the parents were too stressed about food, their children would also become stressed, and stressed children would develop weak digestive systems. Though he emphasized the importance of snacks, he also conjectured that eating too many snacks or eating at the wrong time could lead to gastrointestinal problems.