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Thousands of Japanese people in the war generation have left oral or written accounts of their wartime experiences. Very often this testimony forms the basis of exhibits and websites of Museums and Peace Museums. Testimony is also a staple of documentary programmes such as NHK Specials. Testimony sometimes also features in English in the programming of NHK World.

There are also large online collections of testimony:

The most important online archive is NHK Archives, which has over 2000 video clips of testimony about the war and postwar. Here is the direct link to the war testimony archives (Japanese only).

There are large collections of hibakusha (A-bomb victim) testimony: Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum Peace Database and Atomic Bomb Survivors produced by Nagasaki Peace.

I have discussed issues relating to testimony in a three-article series for the Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus.

“Testimony and War Memories in Japan: Introduction”

“War Responsibility and the Family in Japan: Kurahashi Ayako’s My Father’s Dying Wish”

“Historiography and Japanese War Nationalism: Testimony in Sensōron, Sensōron as Testimony”

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