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AlegalBiopolitics and the Unintelligibility of Okinawan Life$
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Annmaria M. Shimabuku

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780823282661

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823282661.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FORDHAM SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Fordham University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FSO for personal use.date: 26 October 2020

Okinawa, 1972–1995: Life That Matters

Okinawa, 1972–1995: Life That Matters

(p.124) Chapter 5 Okinawa, 1972–1995: Life That Matters

Annmaria M. Shimabuku

Fordham University Press

This chapter examines the post-reversion era from 1972 to 1995. Along with reversion came the enforcement of the anti-prostitution law and the demise of Okinawa’s large-scale sex industry. The first generation of mixed-race individuals came of age and started speaking for themselves instead of allowing themselves to be spoken for. This was also a time when Okinawans started to look past the unfulfilled promises of the Japanese state for liberation and to conceptualize different forms of autonomy in the global world. This chapter reconsiders self-determination as a philosophical concept. In place of the imperative for a unified self and unified nation as the precondition for entry into selfhood and nationhood (i.e., the capacity for “self-determination”), this chapter revisits Matsushima Chōgi’s concept of the “Okinawan proletariat” to rethink the theoretical implications of Okinawa, as a borderland of the Pacific, where humans and non-human objects circulate. It appeals to Tosaka’s anti-idealist attempt to assign a different kind of agency to morphing matter and reads Tanaka Midori’s mixed-race memoir, My Distant Specter of a Father, for an example of a life that fails to unify before the state, but nonetheless continues to matter or be significant in the quality of its mutability.

Keywords:   mixed-race identity, matter and space, Okinawan political economy, self-determination, Tosaka Jun

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