Margaret Bourke-White – Japan June 1952, Orphans of Occupation


Thanks to Google source:Life



By-blows of Occupation of Japan

By-blows of Occupation of Japan

 Large picture

Japan Essay
Date taken: June 1952
Photographer: Margaret Bourke-White
Size: 1280 x 983 pixels (17.8 x 13.7 inches)

(no tags – probably never used.)

The editors of Life magazine must have had a fit when they saw this photo (one of three in the Japan essay and likely not used). At first glance it looks like a group of Japanese children with a minder. On closer inspection you notice that these children are of mixed descent and there are two nuns in the background. This suggests that this was taken at an orphanage or school and these are the orphans of occupation. (Look how we are fighting the cold war, people, or proof positive somebody has been making love, not war.)

Margaret Bourke-White was no fool and this was probably her way of reminding people back home that the USA needed a policy to deal with these children. More than half a century later, it is very difficult to convey the feelings that this picture would invoked because there had been for decades, the theme of the yellow peril and since 1940 propaganda against first the Japanese, then the Communist Chinese.


Note to Americans, Australia did a very poor job with their orphans of occupation, we just left them behind.


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