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Death And The Japanese Self-Defence Forces: Anticipation, Deployment And Cultural Scripts

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents an analysis of how military death is handled by the contemporary Japanese Self-Defence Forces (SDF). Concretely, it is an investigation of the ways in which 'anticipating', expecting, forecasting and considering death in ongoing and future military scenarios may help us in understanding the character and dynamics of the SDF. The chapter argues that the case of the Japanese SDF is a unique one, through which it is possible to explore the management of death as it is related to what may be called the 'future' orientation towards demise. As justifying participation in peacekeeping operations and humanitarian assignments has now been accepted by the people of many nations, it may be argued that deaths in such missions represent new elements within the cultural script of good military deaths. The chapter presents an analysis of the manner in which the SDF anticipate death in ongoing and future military circumstances.

Keywords: cultural script; humanitarian assignments; Japanese Self-Defence Forces (SDF); military death



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