Three Stories about a Statue

TitleThree Stories about a Statue
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsDavidson, Ronald
JournalYearbook of the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers
Date Published01/2018

In 2013, the town of Glendale, California installed "Peace Monument," a bronze statue representing "comfort women"—girls and women coerced to work in brothels serving Japanese soldiers during World War II. Japanese groups deny such women were coerced and sued to remove the statue. The conflict over the monument attests to California's deepening ties across a Pacific region haunted by conflicting nationalist memories of World War II. But the monument speaks to other themes as well, including the increasing cultural impact of Korean-American groups on the Southern California landscape, and the recent diversification of subjects honored in monuments both locally and nationally. This article outlines these three stories about the statue for their interest to West Coast geographers.

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