Examination and Discovery
This poem erases British Naval Officer Basil Hall’s 1818 Account of a Voyage of Discovery to the West Coast of Corea and the Great Loo-Choo Island in the Japan Sea. In 1945, Japanese children returned to school with the same textbooks they’d had before the war. Directed by SCAP, teachers guided students to ink out pro-military or nationalistic words and phrases as they came up during lessons. Former student Kurita Wataru recalls one such instance in this book’s epigraph.