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Nanjing museum pays tribute to World War II comfort women victims
Nanjing museum pays tribute to World War II comfort women victims


Visiting the ‘Comfort Women’ museum in Seoul – International Association of Women’s Museums

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Visiting the ‘Comfort Women’ museum in Seoul – International Association of Women's Museums
Visiting the ‘Comfort Women’ museum in Seoul – International Association of Women’s Museums

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Digital Museum: The Comfort Women Issue and the Asian Women’s Fund

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  • Summary of article content: Articles about Digital Museum: The Comfort Women Issue and the Asian Women’s Fund In this hall, it is to be described how the comfort station were made in the war time, and how the victims were brought there. …
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Digital Museum: The Comfort Women Issue and the Asian Women's Fund
Digital Museum: The Comfort Women Issue and the Asian Women’s Fund

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Comfort Women History Center | Cultural Spaces | Tourism & Culture | Gwangju

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  • Summary of article content: Articles about Comfort Women History Center | Cultural Spaces | Tourism & Culture | Gwangju Comfort Women History Center is the world’s first museum for the human right of sex slaves, having opened on August 14, 1998. It was built to preserve the … …
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Comfort Women History Center | Cultural Spaces | Tourism & Culture | Gwangju
Comfort Women History Center | Cultural Spaces | Tourism & Culture | Gwangju

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Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace – Sites of Conscience

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Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace – Sites of Conscience
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Ama Museum – Wikipedia

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  • Summary of article content: Articles about Ama Museum – Wikipedia The Ama Museum (traditional Chinese: 阿嬤家-和平與女性人權館; simplified Chinese: 阿嬷家- … Yǔ Nǚxìng Rénquán Guǎn) is a museum dedicated to comfort women in Taiwan. …
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Ama Museum - Wikipedia
Ama Museum – Wikipedia

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Ama Museum – Wikipedia

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Name[edit]

History[edit]

Architecture[edit]

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See also[edit]

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Ama Museum - Wikipedia
Ama Museum – Wikipedia

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Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace – Toward a future of peace and non-violence

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Women's Active Museum on War and Peace – Toward a future of peace and non-violence
Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace – Toward a future of peace and non-violence

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Visiting the ‘Comfort Women’ museum in Seoul – International Association of Women’s Museums

After having gained a very good first insight into the issue of Japan’s military sexual slavery system in the woman’s museum in Tokyo, I visited two more of the so called ‘comfort-women’s’- museums. I went to South Korea and to Taiwan. The women of these countries were the victims of the Japanese aggressors and had to suffer a lot as sex slaves.

Warning! The following text may shake your state of mind.

Born in Korea in 1929 – at the age of 16 drafted into the first Women’s Voluntary Service Corps and sent to a Japanese airplane factory – exploited by hard labour – starving – escaped from the factory – caught and raped by a Japanese officer – taken to a socalled ‘comfort station’, ……….. This is the beginning of a short biography that describes crucial events of a woman’s life. Although she had to endure a lot of harm and pain she could overcome her painful life as a victim and turn into a human rights activist. In 1992, at the age of 63, nearly 50 years after the end of World War II and the end of her life as a sex slave, she gained power and courage to make her bad experiences public. And she began to fight for her rights – her name: KANG DUK- KYUNG “HALMONI” (1929 – 1997). A life not only as a victim but also as an activist. Thus she is one of the 5 women the museum chose for its admission tickets. By reading some sentences on the back side of your ticket you do the first step into the life of a Korean sex slave, lovingly called “halmoni” (= grandmother) in the texts.

When opening a door that leads to a small corridor I’m immediately overwhelmed by an ear-deafening noise: marching soldiers and cannon fire. Step by step I’m stumbling forward on a gravel road, leading my deeper into the painful history of the ‘comfort women’. On the left wall of the corridor I look at painted girls, their heads bent, moving forward like shadows without knowing where they will end up – young women on their way into their future lives as sex slaves. From the opposite side faces of elder ‘comfort women’ are looking at the newcomers. What would they tell them? Should they warn them? Console them? Should they shout or whisper?

Some last steps bring me down into the basement. Here I can listen to and look at former sex slaves who tell about their painful lives. It’s very touching to listen to their stories via my audio guide in English. Time and again they are overwhelmed by emotions; try to keep back their tears. Sometimes, when talking about the cruelties and the injustice done to them, they need a pause to gain back mental strength for continuing. Listening to their voices makes me feel uneasy and the small room of the basement feels like a prison cell. So I feel relieved when I leave this dark room and go up a staircase into the light. On my way up I pass by the “wall of appeal”. It exhibits photos of former sex slaves and paintings about how they were taken to ‘comfort stations’ by Japanese soldiers. I can read some statements of victims, engraved on the wall. The higher I go up the more I feel hope expressed in their words:

These children should live in a peaceful world. My wish is that I may hear even a word of sincere apology. How bitter a life I shall live! Bring back my youth!

So I reach the second floor and step into the Room of History. Exhibited objects and documents bear witness to the reality of the rape camps and its cruelty, again and again tried to be denied or extenuated by the Japanese: military documents that prove the construction of comfort stations; valueless military currency used as payment for sex services, including price lists with different prices depending on the rank; admission tickets and discounts for ‘comfort stations’, condoms with cynical names like “Rush No 1” or “Assault No 1”, photos and diaries telling about the soldiers’ experiences while visiting ‘comfort stations’ with friends; ‘comfort women’ waiting to see a doctor for the regular check-up to guarantee the safety of the soldiers; photos of injured sex slaves including medical findings, deriving from obsessive violence, torture and rape; illustration of a rape camp with its “rooms” for raping women in the centre and soldiers standing in a queue in front of them.

In case of Korean women in the rape camps I get to know that they were between 14 and 19 years old, the youngest only 11. After the end of the war their sufferings continued. Many of the sex slaves suffered from physical diseases and/or posttraumatic stress disorders. When they went back into their home countries they were humiliated and degraded again. In the patriarchal societies they were seen as impure. Many women got divorced as soon as their husbands figured out that they once worked as `comfort women`. No wonder, that the women kept silence for a long time.

In war and in peace, the husbands of raped women place a major burden of blame for the awful event on their wives. Susan Brownmiller (geb. 1935), American journalist, author, human rights and feminist activist, 1975

After these depressing contents it’s good to hear something about survivors who broke the silence. It started with the first witness KIM HAK-SOON “HALMONI”. As Japan persistently refuses to admit its responsibility for the war crimes done on women and ignores the demands of the victims, South Korean and international organizations support their fight for justice and acknowledgement. In the year 2000, the Women`s International War Crimes Tribunal on Japans Military Sexual Slavery” was held on behalf of all women of the world. It was a powerful sign by the global civil society to end the impunity of wartime sexual violence and to persecute and punish the perpetrators. Meanwhile many states urge on Japan to recognize its guilt.

Something special and very impressive are the socalled “Wednesday Demonstrations”, that are held in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul since 1991. With them survivors and their supporters want to reach that the Japanese government takes over responsibility for the rape camps called ‘comfort stations’ and its victims. In addition, they want that Japan apologizes for its cruelties and thinks about reparation payment. At the 1000th demonstration, in December 2011, they set up the Peace Statue of a Girl, a copy of which I can see here in the museum.

My audio guide offers a lot of interesting details about it: The girl is looking at the Japanese embassy, looking into the harsh reality that the Japanese government refuses to acknowledge its guilt. The bird on the girl´s shoulder symbolizes the bridge that should connect the survivors with those former ‘comfort women’ that already have passed away. The chair besides the girl is for us, the visitors. If you want to show your solidarity with the demonstrators, please sit down and take a picture.

Within a special exhibition the museum reflects on the dark side of South Korea`s history. It gives evidence of the war crimes of its soldiers done on Vietnamese women during the Vietnamese War.

In addition, the museum focuses not only on the past but still on the present. It documents the fact that raping women is a central issue in the various conflicts on our planet, even in the 21st century. You just need to think of Bosnia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Congo, Afghanistan, Iraq…

The East Congo, I hear from my audio guide, is known as the “capital of rape”. The following sentence is deeply engraved in my brain:

It`s more dangerous to be a woman than to be a soldier in modern conflict.

Not only women are mistreated in wars, even children. It´s just shocking to look at the map of the world, titled: “Children in armed conflicts” and to read about children as soldiers and girls raped in wars – worldwide.

After my walk through the museum I go to the museum`s garden. The statue “Kim Bokdong and Gil Wonok are Peace” should enable to view at the future with hope. It was set up at the International Women`s Day in 2012 and presents two former sex slaves and later human rights activists: Kim Bokdong and Gil Wonok.

I was taken when I was 13. Because I`ve experienced the pain myself, I know, how much pain other sexual violence victims are suffering from. I want to give strength to these women enduring the some pain as us. Gil Wonok; 91 years old

Because of their own bad experiences these two women promised to donate their reparation payments – in case they ever would receive money from the Japanese government – to victims of sexual violence in armed conflicts. To honour their decision the “Butterfly Fund” was founded. The butterfly symbolizes the wish to all women that they may live without discrimination, suppression and violence. Thus, as a visitor, you are invited to share your thoughts, wishes or promises for those women suffering from any kind of violence. You just write your words on a yellow butterfly made of paper and put it on the museum`s wall when leaving it.

Marianne Wimmer, collector of women’s museums

Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace – Sites of Conscience

The Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace (WAM) was established in August 2005 with donations from people in Japan and abroad. WAM is Japan’s only museum focusing on violence against women in war and conflict situations, particularly Japan’s military sexual slavery, euphemistically called the “comfort women” issue. In December 2000, the Women’s International War Crimes Tribunal on Japan’s Military Sexual Slavery was held in Tokyo by the global civil society to end the cycle of impunity of wartime sexual violence.

The Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace preserves tribunal documents and the testimonies of victims/survivors to pass onto the next generation. WAM seeks to make the Japanese government accountable for Japan’s military sexual slavery system and provides a space to remember women’s stories of suffering as well as the struggle to restore dignity and justice. They work to create a world of peace, where no woman suffers from violence or discrimination.

Ama Museum

Museum in Datong, Taipei, Taiwan

The Ama Museum (traditional Chinese: 阿嬤家-和平與女性人權館; simplified Chinese: 阿嬷家-和平与女性人权馆; pinyin: Āmā Jiā-Hépíng Yǔ Nǚxìng Rénquán Guǎn) is a museum dedicated to comfort women in Taiwan. It opened in 2016, in Datong District, Taipei. The original location closed in November 2020, and the museum is scheduled to relocate and reopen in April 2021.

Name [ edit ]

The museum is dedicated to those who were comfort women during the Japanese rule of Taiwan.[1] Ama means grandmother in Taiwanese Hokkien, referring to the advanced age of those who had survived World War II.[1][2]

History [ edit ]

The original idea to establish the museum started in 2004. Supported by a large donation from the public in and outside Taiwan, as well as the Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation (TWRF), the museum plaque was unveiled in a ceremony on 8 March 2016 in conjunction with International Women’s Day.[2][3][4] The ceremony was attended by President Ma Ying-jeou and one former comfort woman.[5][6]

The museum was finally opened on 10 December 2016 in a ceremony attended by Culture Minister Cheng Li-chun in conjunction with Human Rights Day and the 25th anniversary of the efforts made by the foundation towards comfort women.[5] Speaking during the ceremony, Cheng urged people to never forget the past and to strive for better gender equality.[7] The TWRF chair said that the museum would also be a place to promote gender equality and highlight the damages made by sexual abuse.[8] The ceremony was also attended by one surviving Taiwanese comfort woman and advocates from Japan, South Korea and the United States.[1][9]

The Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation announced in July 2020 that the Ama Museum would close in November 2020. The museum had operated at a loss since it opened in 2016, and the TWRF sold its offices in 2019 in an effort to keep the museum running. However, the COVID-19 pandemic reduced the museum’s income further, leading to the decision to close it.[10][11] In October 2020, the Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation began a fundraiser to move the Ama Museum, confirming that the original location would close on 10 November 2020.[12] On 7 November 2020, the Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation released another statement on the fate of the Ama Museum, stating that its exhibits would move to an office building near Minquan West Road metro station, scheduled to open in April 2021.[13][14]

Architecture [ edit ]

The museum was originally housed in a renovated 90-year-old 2-story building with a total floor area of 495 m2.[2] The original location featured a café and workshop space.[15]

Exhibitions [ edit ]

At its original location, the museum permanently displayed photos, documents and videos related to Taiwanese comfort women.[1][16] When it reopened, the museum planned to rotate exhibitions and introduce new ones.[13][14]

Activities [ edit ]

In its original location, the museum hosted various workshops and seminars on topics related to human rights.[1] In August 2017, the museum launched a campaign to pressure the Government of Japan through the Japan–Taiwan Exchange Association to apologize and compensate the remaining comfort women.[17]

Transportation [ edit ]

The museum’s original location was accessible within walking distance south west of Daqiaotou Station of Taipei Metro. Its new location will be an office building near Minquan West Road Station.

See also [ edit ]

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