Japanese activists who support redress for "comfort women": why and how do they address the "comfort women" issue?

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Nakayama, Hayato
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The purpose of this research is to find out: What led Japanese activists who support “comfort women” to hold their opinions, and what do they think contributes to the polarized public opinion about “comfort women” in Japan? What are their activities and strategies to address the issue? How do those activists evaluate their activism and the resolution process? In-depth qualitative interviews were utilized to collect data. The research findings showed that different interpretations of the Second World War and different understandings about male and female rights and roles influenced people’s opinions about “comfort women.” Japanese activists used international pressure to address the issue. Also, it was found that the rightward political trend in Japan fueled by economic recession was impeding the progress of addressing the problem. Based on the findings, suggestions were made to improve the activism, including consideration of reconciliation as a way of dealing with the problem.
comfort women, gender-based violence