ABSTRACT

Experiences of captivity in Japanese-occupied Asia varied enormously. Some prisoners of war (POWs) were sent to work in Japan, others to toil on the ‘Death Railway’ between Burma and Thailand. Some camps had death rates below 1 per cent, others of over 20 per cent. While POWs were deployed far and wide as a captive labour force, civilian internees were generally detained locally.

This book explores differences in how captivity was experienced between 1941 and 1945, and has been remembered since: differences due to geography and logistics, to policies and personalities, and marked by nationality, age, class, gender and combatant status. Part One has at least one chapter for each ‘National Memory’, Australian, British, Canadian, Dutch, Indian and American. Part Two moves on to forgotten captivities. It covers women, children, camp guards, internee experiences upon the end of the war, and local heroines who fought back.

By juxtaposing such a wide variety of captivity experiences – differentiated both by category of captive and by approach - this book transcends place, to become a collection about captivity as a category. It will interest scholars working on the Asia-Pacific War, on captivities in general, and on the individual histories of the countries and groups covered.

chapter 1|20 pages

Japanese-occupied Asia from 1941 to 1945: One occupier, many captivities and memories

ByKARL HACK, KEVIN BLACKBURN

part |2 pages

Part I: National memories

chapter 4|16 pages

Memory and the prisoner of war experience: The United Kingdom

ByKingdom SIBYLLA JANE FLOWER

part |2 pages

Part II: Forgotten captivities

chapter 10|21 pages

Japanese guards in film and memory: White Skin, Yellow Commander

ByKAORI MAEKAWA

chapter 14|17 pages

Unlikely heroines: Sybil Kathigasu and Elizabeth Choy

ByP . LIM PUI HUEN

chapter 15|18 pages

‘Hide and seek’: Children of Japanese–Indisch parents

ByEVELINE BUCHHEIM

chapter 16|25 pages

The Dutch community in Thailand, 1945–46

ByARNO OOMS