Travelling Japan’s Wars

Japan has been involved in many wars throughout its history. They are remembered in quite different ways according to who they were between, how recent they were, and the nature of the fighting. This section of the website is built around the 2022 book War as Entertainment and Contents Tourism in Japan (Routledge, edited by Takayoshi Yamamura and Philip Seaton).

The book is completely open access. You can simply download the whole book (51.4MB) from the Routledge homepage. Or you can work through the sections below, reading the chapter and then watching/reading the supplementary materials suggested by the chapter authors.


A historical overview of Japan’s wars.

War-related contents tourism

Considering how and why war transitions from traumatic to entertaining in collective memory and popular culture … and why we avoid discussion of “dark tourism”.

From myths to the middle ages

Case studies from Japan’s distant past (to the thirteenth century.

The rise and fall of the Tokugawas

Wars from the unification of Japan in the sixteenth century to the Meiji Restoration.

Imperial Japan

The period of expansionism from the colonization of Hokkaido to the eve of the Second World War

The Asia-Pacific War

From wars in China in the 1930s to defeat in 1945

Postwar Japan

Entertainment relating to the modern Japan Self-Defense Force or futuristic/fantasy wars.


The different types of war-related (contents) tourism.

Photo gallery and captions for the photos on this page.