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Displaying the future: techno-nationalism and the rise of the consumer in Postwar Japan

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This paper explains how, in the aftermath of World War II, a type of techno-nationalism emerged that linked being Japanese to science and technology and the increased consumption of electrical appliances. By closely examining official exhibitions, we can see how the state and private sector strongly encouraged this techno-scientific dreaming. Dazzling displays highlighted how the peaceful atom would help lead the nation to achieve high economic growth. At the same time, through the judicious purchase of labor saving appliances, consumers could reconcile the need to spend with the need to save.

Keywords: Atomic energy; Exhibitions; Japan; Nationalism; Science; Technology

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0734151032000123945

Affiliations: Department of Asian Languages and Studies, University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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