Cover image for Bamboozled! : how America loses the intellectual game with Japan and its implications for our future in Asia
Bamboozled! : how America loses the intellectual game with Japan and its implications for our future in Asia
Hall, Ivan P., 1932-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Armonk, N.Y. : M.E. Sharpe, [2002]

Physical Description:
xxviii, 324 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
"An East Gate book."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E183.8.J3 H24 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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As the influence of the United States in Asia declines with the end of the Cold War, America must look more to brains than military might in achieving our objectives in the region. But after repeatedly allowing Japan - our closest ally in Asia - to mislead us intellectually and psychologically, how well are we prepared to deal with less friendly emerging powers like China and India? Based on three decades of on-the-spot observation and participation in Japan, Ivan Hall's provocative work draws the reader into a world of intellectual manipulation and gullibility, false images, emotional blackmail, financial beguilement, and fatuous expectations. It illuminates the many ways that American ideological hubris and Japanese pleading for special treatment combine to deprive our trans-Pacific dialogue of the honesty, openness, and plain common sense of our trans-Atlantic intellectual ties with Europe.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

The author, long-time scholar, observer, and resident of Japan, asserts that the US is the unwitting target of a consistent, coordinated, and conscientious Japanese effort to shape views and images of Japan to gain an advantage in bilateral relations. Hall even argues that Americans have been fooled into believing that the Japanese economy is in dire straits. Apparently, this has been accomplished by such methods as manipulating official, academic, and popular views of Japan and deflecting or suppressing US criticism as "Japan bashing." Hall details both the extensive Japanese lobbying networks in the US and the efforts in Japan to prevent US views from reaching Japanese audiences. The study would benefit from an analysis of the social behavior and psychology that compels the Japanese to engage in this behavior, as well as a comparative analysis of the lobbying efforts of other countries in the US. Although one wonders how the entire world, except for Hall and his small group of like-minded revisionists, could continue to be fooled by Japan, this polemic offers a provocative and challenging perspective at odds with mainstream views. Recommended, with a grain of salt, for those interested in US-Japan relations. All levels and collections. M. D. Ericson University of Maryland University College

Table of Contents

Prologue: In the Shadow of 11 September
Introduction: The Old Deal-Why Our Muddled Thinking Matters
I Illusion: "On a Cloth Untrue" Japanese Mentalities, American Misreadings
1 Economic Mirage-The Asian Crisis and "Change"
2 Anti-Americanism-"Sayonara" as the Ultimate Blackmail
3 New Old Right-Reactionaries in "Neoconservative" Garb
4 Limping Liberalism-Civil Courage Derided as "Leftist Lite"
5 Pan Asianism-Behind the Bromides of "East-West Bridging"
6 Samurai Ethic-Premature Prognoses of "Individualism"
II Collusion: "With a Twisted Cue"
7 Special Pleading-Our Rhetorical Trouncings on Trade
8 Ostracism-Sidelinin the Heterodox
9 Yen-The Pavlovian Trot for Japan's Academic Largesse
10 Dollars-The Long Retreat of American Philanthropy
11 Organization-The Mutual Understanding Industry
12 People-Of Buffers, Barnacles, and Gatekeepers
III Self Delusion: "And Elliptical Billiard Balls"
13 Gullible's Travels-Our Four Faulty Vision Things
14 Rollercoaster-The Prewar Matrix of Plus-Minus Images
15 Macarthur Maxim-Democratic Missionizing through the 1950s
16 Reischauer Rubric-Cultural Sensitizing from the 1960s
17 Number-Oneism-Economic Giantizing in the 1970s
18 Brief Awakening-Revisionist Turnaround in the 1980s
19 Dumbing Down-PC and other Intellectual Follies of the 1990s
Conclusion: The Punishment Fits the Crime