Before proceeding any further I wish to make it perfectly clear to the readers of this review that it is not my intention here to attack Chang personally or to take issue with her politics or agenda. That she advocates a full and sincere apology and financial compensation from the Japanese government for atrocities committed by the Japanese army against the people of China is not my concern. That she wishes to present those atrocities as a forgotten holocaust is not my concern.
Before proceeding any further I wish to make it perfectly clear to the readers of this review that it is not my intention here to attack Chang personally or to take issue with her politics or agenda.
That she advocates a full and sincere apology and financial compensation from the Japanese government for atrocities committed by the Japanese army against the people of China is not my concern. That she wishes to present those atrocities as a forgotten holocaust is not my concern.
That she attempts to make a case for a textbook cover-up, for a "cover-up" by certain Japanese scholars and the Japanese government in general is not my concern. Furthermore, I have no intention of arguing for or against the Japanese government's stand on matters related to China historical or contemporarynor of taking sides in the Nanking debate among Japanese historians.
Now, it is certainly not the case that I have no personal opinions about Chang's political agenda, about the Japanese government's position on matters related to China, or the Nanking debate.
In preparing this review, however, I have made a conscious effort to suspend judgment or bracket my own opinions on these matters. The media feeding-frenzy over The Rape of Nanking and it author, Iris Chang, is not particularly surprising. As cultural phenomena these frenzies are stimulated much less by a sincere interest in a book's content or its author than in viewer ratings, selling copy, and from the publisher's standpoint, selling books.
There is a definite pattern in the reviews published in major US newspapers, which, for the record, I read only after reading Chang's book. In short, the reviews are all long on praise and virtually void of negative remarks. If that sounds harsh, good, that's precisely what I intend it to sound like.
The mass media and those who write for it are often incredibly irresponsible and they need to be told so. With respect to the many errors in The Rape of Nanking, the blame must fall directly on Chang and indirectly on her editors at Basic Books.
Chang's claim that certain scholars at big name universities Oxford, Columbia, and Harvard "took the time to review my book before publication and to enrich it with their important scholarly suggestions" p.
I have grouped those problems into four categories: Of these charges, the last is potentially the most damaging to Chang's reputation and for that reason I will exercise great care in establishing my case against her.
Careless Errors Chang informs her readers, "For Chinese and Japanese names of people, I use the traditional system of listing the surname before the given name" p. This is standard practice and we as readers should be able to take for granted that Chang follows her own policy with the possible exceptions of Japanese-American or Chinese-American names and Japanese and Chinese names in direct quotes in which the given name is placed before the surname in the original text.
The following list demonstrates that Chang is inconsistent in her use of Japanese names.
These mistakes are minor and easily correctable, but nevertheless they are annoying to informed readers and can be bewildering to the casual reader. Furthermore, their frequency must make one wonder whether Chang and her editors really know the difference between Japanese family and personal names.Following her death, her work is still widely read.
She was the subject of the biography Finding Iris Chang and the documentary Iris Chang: The Rape of Nanking.
Wars of Memory / When Iris Chang wrote ``The Rape of Nanking,'' to memorialize one of the bloodiest massacres of civilians in modern times, she wasn't prepared for the firestorm she started.
Iris Chang’s groundbreaking work, “The Rape of Nanking” is widely credited with publicizing the World War II atrocity that many in Japan continue to deny or belittle as exaggeration. Graphically observant to multiple atrocities, it is not a .
In a work that has only recently come to my attention entitled "Za reipu obu Nankin" no kenkyû () [(Iris Chang's) The Rape of Nanking Examined] (Shôdensha, ), Higashinakano Shûdô () and Fujioka Nobukatsu () devote their energies to refuting Chang's entire book, including the photos.
Chang’s most notable work is her second novel, The Rape of Nanking, which details the events of the Nanking Massacre, an attack by Japanese troops against the Republic of China.
It was a 6-week ordeal that lasted from December 13, to January which resulted in . Iris Chang’s The Rape Of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust Of World War II was unquestionably an incendiary and tendentious book which quickly created a storm of controversy in the United States and Japan back in