Saturday, October 13, 2018

Betraying Their Ideological Commitments?

The storywriters for season 3 of The Man in the High Castle have a part in the story where Americans in the Japanese-controlled Pacific States are peacefully protesting for oil, as the Nazi Empire has implemented an unofficial trade embargo on the Japanese Empire. Even if there had been examples of Americans protesting in the past (veterans, suffragettes, etc.) to make up for the lack of a Gandhi in this fictional universe (I don't recall which empire controls India, but India is not independent), what would make Americans think they are dealing with authorities who would treat them mildly? Given the reprisals that had happened recently because of a resistance attack on the Kempeitai HQ, shouldn't they be fearful that the military/police would crack down on them rather severely? After all, what's a few more dead Americans? Do the writers really want to claim that the "freedom-loving" 60s is bound to bleed over into every part of the multiverse? And a self-immolating Buddhist monk protesting the authorities? This isn't Vietnam! (It is perhaps more likely that Japanese Buddhists would have been caught up with nationalism and militarism along with everyone else, if Zen at War is accurate. But even if some of them changed their minds, would they have lit themelves on fire? Is there a practice of that in Japan?)

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