III. Representation: Unforgettable Memory vs. Great History
a. Comfort Women Statue before the South Korea-Japan Agreement
b. Comfort Women Statue after the South Korea-Japan Agreement
History is a means by which to document and pass on the events of the past. History is not only a task which aims to reveal past facts, but also to generate a composite image of the past from cultural, economic, and political indicators, something which can cause divergent opinions and conflicts. Some researchers believe that history and memory have a complementary relationship. However, history and memory can sometimes seem to be antithetical of one another, particularly with regard to countries having different interpretations of the same historical event.
The dispute over so-called ‘comfort women’ is one typical case. The term ‘comfort women’ is a euphemism referring to women forced into sexual slavery by the forces of the Empire of Japan during World War II. According to data collected, comfort stations were established in the name of reducing sexual assault cases and venereal disease, and aimed at local residents in occupied territories.
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