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History follow-up.

I'm a long-time subscriber to Bookmarks and always appreciate the care that goes into creating a publication featuring a variety of perspectives. However, I nearly choked when I noticed the inclusion of Iris Chang's pseudo-nonfiction Rape of Nanking in Katie Capaldi's "Nonfiction for the Escapist Literati" selections. Since its publication in 1997, Chang's work has been discounted as not only inaccurate but fundamentally vilifying. Her blunders range from the fairly innocuous dearth of citations to the more troubling misrepresentation of photographic evidence to the downright inflammatory claims that the events at Nanking can be understood as acts by a people who have been conditioned for centuries to commit mass murder.

I am not an apologist: there is no question that the Japanese acted in horrific ways during their westward expansion. My opinions are simply an exhortation to take all historical accounts with a grain of salt and a great deal of supplementary research.

Bridget Allison

Boston, Massachusetts

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Author:Allison, Bridget
Article Type:Letter to the editor
Date:Jul 1, 2011
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