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Conflicting “Realities” in-between Korea and Japan: The Meaning of Asahi’s Withdrawal of Reporting on “Comfort Women” in 2014

Fri, June 10, 14:00 to 15:15, Fukuoka Hilton, Rigel


In August 2014, the Asahi Shimbun announced that it would withdraw its "false coverage" of “comfort women” that relied on the testimony of a former Japanese soldier. Rival newspapers and the right wing activists criticized the paper for damaging the image of Japan in the world. However, our findings from analyzing news coverage in Korean daily newspapers prove that Asahi’s retracted articles as well as the testimony had a limited impact on the “comfort women” issue in Korea, a nation directly affected by this historical and political issue. This shows that the reality over “comfort women” issues is constructed differently in Japan and Korea. Finally, we suggest that this discrepancy is mainly attributed to the rising nationalism in Japan.