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V - The Arts and Monuments Division

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 November 2020

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Summary

Culture within the Civil Information and Education (CIE) Section

The Civil Information and Education (CIE) Section, one of the largest within the sprawling SCAP structure, had a vast mandate. This included all matters falling under the umbrella of ‘sociological’ reforms – i.e. formulating education policies, democratizing the national school system, recommending policies to eliminate militarisms and ultranationalism, eradicating juvenile military training and institutions, regulating religious affairs, and so on.

The CIE had originally coalesced from two entities with rather opposing characteristics, hence its somewhat ambiguous (some say schizophrenic) identity. The ‘Education’ section (initially part of AFPAC's Military Government Section) had been set up in June 1945, staffed mostly by academics, teachers and reformers. The ‘Information’ section, however, had originated in the intelligence and security community, partially with the Psychological Warfare Branch staffed by, to put it crudely, spies. The CIE had been ‘cobbled together’ in the words of Takemae and incorporated into SCAP with almost two opposing wings or identities. Still, it somehow had to function as one whole to deliver on its core objective, namely to advise MacArthur on ‘public information, education, religion and other sociological problems of Japan and Korea’. Its main counterpart in the Japanese government was the Ministry of Education.

The Arts and Monuments (A&M) Division, which brought together under one roof the MFAA officers in the Far East, was established within the CIE. Officially, the A&M became a division only in 1946, but its genesis and mandate were articulated through the August 29, 1945 memo addressed by Lieutenant Popham to the US Secretary of War, thus even before SCAP itself had been effectively set up. A cluster of culture specialists led by George L. Stout had early on formed the unit, and its structure and core activities were, thanks to Stout's prior experiences in Europe, swiftly articulated. The protection, preservation and salvage of works of art and antiquities were the prime focus of the A&M Division, and the broad reach of its mandate included museums, libraries, archives, temples and shrines as well as historical sites.

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Chapter
Information
Publisher: Amsterdam University Press
Print publication year: 2019

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