- マス・コミュニケーション研究 (ISSN:13411306)
- vol.88, pp.17-33, 2016-01-31 (Released:2017-10-06)
This study focuses on popular songs concerning "the war and women" in post-war Japan. In particular, three songs were examined: Akiko Kikuchi's "Hoshi no Nagare ni" and "Ganpeki no Haha" released in 1947 and 1954, respectively, and Yuriko Futaba's popular remake of "Ganpeki no Haha" released in 1972. These songs were analyzed in connection with the societal background in which they gained popularity, including the influence of mainstream values as well as concepts of women and mothers that were held at the time. The results of this analysis suggested that directly after the war ended, many Japanese women were despondent and pushed into prostitution because of an impoverished society. The song "Hoshi no Nagare ni" conveys the sorrows of prostitution, and this theme is directly connected to its success. The 1954 hit "Ganpeki no Haha" has strong connections to the suspicion that Japanese citizens felt toward the Self Defense Force, which was established in the same year, as well as to the massive protests in 1960 concerning the US-Japan Defense Treaty. In particular, the general public tended to be influenced by stories about "mothers' sadness," particularly in terms of mothers and children being separated by war. This had powerful correlations with peace-oriented public opinion and anti-rearmament attitudes of the time. However, Yuriko Futaba's mid-1970s remake of "Ganpeki no Haha" gained mass popularity for several reasons. The 1970s witnessed the appearance of the "kyouiku-mama" (literally "education mama") -a type of mother who stressed on education for her children above everything else. The "kyouiku-mama" was considered to be a social problem during the time, and the completely different type of mother presented in "Ganpeki no Haha" produced feelings of longing for an "ideal mother" archetype that was perceived to be lost from the society. Therefore, "Ganpeki no Haha" was highly praised by the general public.