Wanna Know a Behind-the-Scenes Story about the Making of the Current Constitution? Then, What Do You Say To Watching A Film?

Date: Saturday, November 22, 2014

Time: 15:00-18:00 (the audience would be admitted only after 14:30)

Location: Room 118 Shikō-kan, Doshisha University’s Karasuma Campus
(Confusing? Then, view a map).

No reservation required.

No fee required.

*Please note that this event will be basically conducted only in Japanese.

 

Out of date and imposed by the GHQ. These platitudes  have been uttered again and again by  those in power with a reactionary/conservative mindset as the  two main  reasons for denouncing the current Constitution of Japan. In response, pointing to the various human rights newly secured by the this Constitution,  some of its proponents have been taking a so-what attitude.  To them, what matters is to what extent the Constitution in its current form have done good to the well-being of (Japanese) individuals living in Japan. The question of who made it or whether it was imposed one-sidedly on the government of Japan back then seem less of their concern.

But, was it really imposed? More accurately put, could the process in or through which  the current Constitution had come into being be really interpreted as initiated and completed only by the GHQ with no regard for the will or/and autonomy of individual Japanese citizens? Furthermore, who gets to decide by what criteria whether the Constitution was imposed by the GHQ irresistibly on Japan or Japanese as a whole?

Using the film Nihon no Aozora  日本の青空  (The Blue Sky in Japan), we would like to explore and discuss these questions  with you in this upcoming salon. We found this film to be helpful in reconsidering the tenability of the so-called Oshitsuke Kenpō-ron 押し付け憲法論  (Imposed Constitution Theory or Theory of Constitution as Externally Imposed), because it features Yasuzō Suzuki (1904-1983) as its leading character. While learning economics as a student at Kyoto Imperial University in the pre-WWII period, Suzuki was arrested for violating Chian Iji Hō 治安維持法 (the Public Security Preservation Law) in 1926. Struck by this misfortune, he began to learn law outside of the university setting, which subsequently led him to become a professor of law. In the aftermath of the war, he organized a non governmental research group by the name of  Kenpō Kenkyū-kai  憲法研究会 (the Constitution Investigation Association) jointly with other Japanese intellectuals and drafted Kenpō Sōan Yōkō 憲法草案要綱 (The Outline of A Draft of the Constitution). Their draft is said to have considerably influenced the content of the GHQ’s draft of the Constitution. Doesn’t it sound like it’s worth watching this film to reconsider the question of in what ways and to what extent ordinary Japanese citizens contributed to the making of the current Constitution?

After watching this hopefully-thought-provoking film for the first 123 minutes, one of the presenters of Kyoto 96th Article Association’s call-to-action statement,  Hiroshi Nakasatomi  (Professor of Law at Tokushima University) would provide/present you with his interpretation of/comments on the film for the sake of stimulating  the subsequent Open Q&A Session and Discussion opened to all of you present.

Since Abe administration decided to empower the government of Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense “in limited cases,” arguing it to be constitutionally justifiable, at its cabinet meeting; bill after bill related to this issue is scheduled to come under discussion in the Diet. As we did in the past salon, we hope that the salon would provide/present you with an opportunity to think together the  significance of the Constitution of Japan.

We look forward to meeting you at the salon.

P.S. Please accept our apologies for arranging  such a long salon this time which might result in exhausting you by or before  the end of salon.

 

Program

・15:00-17:03    Nihon no Aozora  日本の青空  (2007)

・17:03-   Film Review: Hiroshi Nakasatomi (Professor of Law at Tokushima University/Presenter of Kyoto Association of the 96th Article)

・  Open Q&A Session and Discussion with the Floor/Audience

 

Event Coordinator: Yayo Okano (Professor at Doshisha University/The Presenter in Chief of Kyoto Association of the 96th Article)

 

 

Contact

Email: kyoto96ac@gmail.com

Address for Postal Mailings: Kyoto 96 jou no Kai, c/o Shimin Kyoudou Houritsu Jimusho, Hirose Building 2F, Karasuma Dori Nijou Sagaru Nishigawa, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto, 604-0847, Japan

Telephone Number: 075-256-3320 (Not available on weekends)

Official Website: http://kyoto.96jo.net/

*Please note that we would appreciate it if you contact us by email so that we can respond swiftly.

 

flier (Japanese, coming soon)

 

 

We, Kyoto Association of the 96th Article officially set up on November 16, 2013, are striving to turn the tide in our favor, enabling “politics that is based on the three fundamental principles in the current constitution and the principle of constitutionalism and that promises its respect for the current constitution,” by the summer of 2016 when the next election of the House of Councilors are scheduled to take place.

With this goal in mind, our “Kenpou Saron” is designed to be an open gathering where you would be able to mix and mingle with others present in this salon and to discuss with them the idea of peace and human rights that the current Constitution of Japan presupposes.