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My book, “Bengetto Iminno Kyozo to Jitsuzo: Kindai Nihon-Tonan Ajia Kankei-shi no Ichi-Kosatsu (Myth and Reality of the Japanese “Benguet Emigrants” in the Philippines, 1903-1905: A Study of the History on Modern Japan-Southeast Asian Relations), was published 30 years ago in 1989. As I mentioned in the book, “I was apprehensive about the ‘myth’ deriving from a ‘false image’ because it could become a reason for cultural friction between the two countries” (Hayase 1989a, 250). So far, no noticeable cultural friction has occurred in the past three decades. However, when I visited Baguio for the first time after the publication of the book, my apprehension was reaffirmed when I saw the monuments and museum exhibitions regarding Japan and the Japanese. I recognized the differences in historical perception among the people concerned. This paper first introduces how the monuments for the so-called “Benguet Migrants”—who engaged in the construction of the road to the “summer capital,” Baguio—were erected. Taking into consideration that Baguio was built as an American colonial city, I will proceed to discuss the differences in historical views with reference to museum exhibitions.


Shinzo Hayase (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) is a professor at the Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies, Waseda University, Japan. He has a Ph.D. in History from Murdoch University, Australia. He has published several books and journal articles on the history of Asia, maritime Southeast Asian history, modern history of Asia-Japan relations, ethnohistory, and modern history of Philippine-Japan relations. Some of his works are Parallel Historical Recognition (in Japanese, 2022), Sports and Nationalism in Southeast Asia: SEAP Games/SEA Games, 1959-2019 (in Japanese, 2020), Globalizing Yasukuni Controversy from the Perspective of Southeast Asia (in Japanese, 2018), A Walk Through War Memories in Southeast Asia (2010), and Mindanao Ethnohistory beyond Nations (2007).

Article Information

Type of Article: Special Article
Volume, Issue, Year: Volume 58, Issue 1, Year 2022
Pages: 1–36