To understand Zainichi

Yuki Kuori

How many of us in this class know about Zainichi people or are related to them? I do not think that we often have connection with them. To be honest, I did know much about them until I watched “Pachigi” and “Go”. Although, watching just two films dose not mean I am quite familiar with Zainichi people, these two films were meaningful for me.

I have been living in Osaka since I was born. Osaka is one of the famous places where many zainichi people live in, and lots of them are in Turuhashi where we can eat cheap Yakiniku but good quality. but I had little chance to get involved with them when I was a kid because their schools and Japanese public schools were separated and it seemed they lived in their community. Therefore, I did not know much about them.

The first time I was related to them was when I was in junior high school. I belonged to the soccer club and through the soccer match against “Chosen schools”, I came to know them. When I saw them for the first time, I was very shocked. Because they all were with shaven heads, spoke Korean and Japanese by turn and their soccer skills were amazing. At that time my images of zainichi people were kind of scary and totally different from us. After I graduated from the junior high school, there has been no opportunity to know them.

But recently, I have watched ” Pacchigi!” and ” Go” in this class and I have never watched those films describing Zainichi people before. Although the films describe them violence, we Japanese should watch them, because we rarely learn about Zainichi people in school and I think that films are very important means for most Japanese to understand them.

As long as we live together in this land we have to know each other and get along with. At the moment, Japanese do not know much about Zainichi people, so I think watching those films will give us the opportunity to understand them.

3 thoughts on “To understand Zainichi

  1. I hadn’t had any relationship with Zainich people, neither. I knew Zainich in the class for the first time.

    I also think wathing “Pacchigi” and “Go” is good experience for us to understand Zainichi although these movies may not replesent real relationship between Zainichi and Japanese well. However, one who doesn’t know Zainichi at all should watch them to grasp roughly what Zainichi is. After that, we can really feel the gap between the real and these movies by making contact with Zainichi actively.

  2. Actually, I didn’t know there are 民族学校 in the present time. I knew this when I searched about Zainichi after Japanese Society class. I also knew there are 民族学級 which is kind of after school class. Zainichi students in usual Japanese school go to 民族学級 after class and learn about Korea.
    I also think the two films are very good chance to think about Zainichi for us.

  3. Although I am Korean, I did not know all of the difficulties that Zainichi face in Japan. The films ‘Pacchigi’ and ‘Go’ made me think the Zainichi over once again. Just like me, many Koreans may not be very concerned about them. That’s why many Zainichi feel like they do not belong to not only Japan but also Korea. I have realized that we should be concerned about them, because Zainichi is also a part of Korean society and history.
    Also, I agree with the idea that the Japanese and Zainichi have to know each other and get along with each other. I think that they feel distance from each other because they have not had enough chances to know more about each other.

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