[This is a guest post written by Niko Schultz, a Student Assistant in the Prange Collection.]
During the Occupation of Japan, the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers (SCAP) maintained an official non-fraternization policy. This policy forbade soldiers from soliciting Japanese prostitutes and made it difficult for Americans to marry Japanese women. The prohibition on fraternization lasted for four years until SCAP issued a pro-fraternization edict in 1949. In 1952, the McCarran-Walter Act was passed, allowing Japanese spouses of Occupation personnel to immigrate to the United States. Approximately 50,000 Japanese women immigrated to the United States as war brides of American servicemen between 1947 and 1965 (Douglas, 2013).
During the Occupation, the Civil Censorship Detachment (CCD) censored references to fraternization, particularly between Allied personnel and Japanese women, in Japanese publications (Dower, 2000, p. 411). Examples of the censorship of such material can be found in the Prange Collection. This series features three examples of publications in the Prange Collection that were censored because they contained references to fraternization.
Shin Manga: “Spring Girl”
The June 1946 issue of the magazine Shin Manga included a comic called “Spring Girl,” which portrayed two young Japanese women conversing in a park. In the background, two couples were visible, each composed of an American soldier and a Japanese woman. The CCD ordered that the figures in the background be deleted from the comic because the “cartoon of an American soldier with his arm around a Japanese girl” was “liable to cause misunderstanding of the actions of American soldiers” and “would cause resentment of Occupation forces.” The final published version of the comic showed only the two young women in the foreground.