Exhibits Exhibit descriptions < Report Card with Korean Name Erased
Exhibit descriptions
The Nature of Japan’s Colonial Aggression as Reflected in Bank Notes
A Grandmother’s Handmade Mumyeongbe (Cotton Yarn)
Yogan: A Living Necessity
Memories: Sokbaji (Inner Trousers for the Hanbok)
Kyōwakai Membership Card
Report Card with Korean Name Erased
Tokyo Bombing Victim Certificate
Handmade Taegukgi(The Flag of Korea)
Korean Registration Certificate Issued by Osaka Prefecture
Discrimination and Antiforeignism in a Crime Prevention Poster
Kenkoku Gakkō of 60 Years Ago
The Hanshin Education Struggle
Zainichi Koreans and the Pachinko Industry
Bataya Slum Areas in the 1960s
Mun-sun Kim’s Petition Written in Blood
List of Brown Atoll “Honorable Suicides” & Free Korean Press
Towel Used in a Prison for War Criminals
List of Members in the Association for Zainichi Korean Disabled Veterans of the Former Japanese Imperial Army
Choi Seung-hee and Sohn Kee-chung
Propaganda film You and Me
The Joy-Bearing Kkot-Kama (Traditional Korean Marriage Bridal Sedan Chair)
Korean Tigers Taken to Japan

Report Card with Korean Name Erased

The image on the right is the report card of third grader Mu-hyoung Lee (李茂炯) that was issued by the Tokyo City Inada Higher Elementary School for the academic year of 1940. At first sight it may look normal. However, this is a historical artifact of Japanese imperialism’s sōshi kaimei policy, as can be seen in the way Lee’s Korean name has been crossed out and replaced by the Japanese name Shigeru Takeda (武田茂).

1940 is the year that sōshi kaimei was first implemented. It was promulgated as a manifestation of the “great love of Yamato” on Empire Day, February 11, a day meant to celebrate the foundation of Japan by the first Japanese emperor. In accordance with sōshi kaimei, Koreans were ordered to report their new Japanese surnames within 6 months (by August 10). For this reason the Korean name of 李茂炯 was erased after the second semester. The Japanese name change policy is one of the reasons why some Zainichi Koreans use Japanese names today.