Donnerstag, 09. Oktober 2014, 18:30 - 20:00 iCal

‘Mixed Blood’:

Indisch-Japanese and the history and memory of the Japanese occupation of the Netherlands East Indies

Dr. Aya Ezawa (Universität Leiden)

Institut für Ostasienwissenschaften - Japanologie, Seminarraum JAP 1
Spitalgasse 2, 1090 Wien


Relationships between male members of an occupying force and women from occupied territories are not unusual, yet always a highly controversial issue. Accused by their countrymen of betraying their community and nation, women who engage with the ‘enemy’ and the children resulting from such unions are often subject to considerable hostility within their communities. The case of Indisch (Dutch-Indonesian/Creole) women and their children, fathered by Japanese men during the Japanese occupation of the Netherlands East Indies (1942-1945) are no exception. Raised in Indisch families, many of these children grew up without knowledge about their Japanese parentage, yet felt haunted by fierce reactions to their presence. What is the nature of a ‘mixed-race’ identity that takes root in a conflict between nations? How can we conceptualize a racial identity, which is defined by the secrecy and taboo surrounding a child’s Japanese origins? In this talk, I examine the experiences of Indisch-Japanese children born of war to contribute to a better understanding of the relationship between the history and memory of wartime hostilities and the identity formation of children fathered by the ‘enemy.’


Institut für Ostasienwissenschaften/Japanologie und AAJ (Akademischer Arbeitskreis Japan)


Mag. Angela Kramer
Universität Wien
Institut für Ostasienwissenschaften - Japanologie