Samuel Parkinson Porter


University of Wisconsin-Madison


Professor Louise Young
Professor Sarah Thal

Academic Interests:

Japanese military history
Japanese colonialism
Early Nationalist and Communist China
Second World War memory in East Asia and Europe
20th century naval history


Nothing But Sentimentalism: The Demobilization and Reintegration of Japanese Second World War Veterans


Bio Note:

Samuel is a fifth year PhD student studying modern Japanese history at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Before entering graduate school Samuel worked in Washington, DC, as a researcher at the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs on the US-Japan Alliance and the Memory and Reconciliation Project for East Asia.

Presently, Samuel is writing a dissertation that examines the demobilization of the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy and the reintegration of Japanese veterans into post-surrender Japanese society between the years of 1945 and 1950.

His research seeks to uncover the overlooked role that the Imperial Japanese military played in early postwar Asian conflicts, such as the Chinese Civil War, Indonesia’s War of Independence, and the Korean War. Consequently, his work fundamentally questions the veracity of the claim that the Imperial Japanese military ceased to exist after Japan’s surrender and whether or not it ever fully demobilized. Additionally, his work also explores how the demobilization of the Japanese military affected the Japanese public’s view of its former military and how veterans struggled to readjust to life in a war-ruined nation. Altogether, his goal is to provide the first history of the Imperial Japanese military and its veterans that extends beyond Japan’s surrender on August 15, 1945.

Added April 2019