Ramseyer’s History Denialism and the Efforts to “Save Ramseyer”: Focusing on Critique of “A Response to My Critics” (2022)
This article focuses on Ramseyer’s “Contracting for Sex in the Pacific War: A Response to My Critics.” Ramseyer did not accept critiques that evaluated his claims, logic, and empirical methods for denialism in document analysis as lacking academic integrity and research sincerity. His response is mostly limited to the issue of “contractual structure at the wartime ‘comfort stations,’” and addressing the idea that women were never “forcibly conscripted at gunpoint or hauled away against their will.” He continues to argue that women were not “forcibly conscripted” because they agreed on “indentured servitude” contracts based on “credible commitments,” which represent “choices” that “reflect the intelligence and resourcefulness of the women.” He also emphasizes that “there is no contemporaneous documentary evidence of forcible conscription” based on the fabrication of Yoshida Seiji’s book. In doing so, he narrows down the idea of “enforced mobilization” to the term “forcible conscription.” Under this framework, history denialists maintain that existing documents do not show proof of forcible conscription, despite examples such as a U.S. army report that clearly states “all of the 23 women became ‘comfort girls,’ apparently under compulsion and misrepresentation.” Although Ramseyer boasts improved evidence in the 2022 response paper, his list of “evidence” is still full of misappropriations and distortions of official documents from Japan and the U.S. Furthermore, he is presenting inaccurate claims as facts through a circular citation method in which his bibliography relies on history denialists’ works that have already been refuted in academia. He even misappropriates testimonies of “comfort women” by cherry-picking quotes, distorting them in his interpretation, and using them against the victims. This article critically examines his argument, logic, and empirical analysis that are grounded in the abovementioned two frames. I then scrutinize specific examples he empirically analyzed and critically evaluate U.S. military documents he presented as evidence, illuminating his selective appropriation, exaggerative interpretation, generalization errors, and distorted claims. Lastly, I explore the influence that the “Anti-Japanese Tribalism” phenomenon in Korea had on his counterargument, logic, and mechanism and illuminate his “circular citation” method which transforms falsity into truth.
Kang, Sung Hyun
"Ramseyer’s History Denialism and the Efforts to “Save Ramseyer”: Focusing on Critique of “A Response to My Critics” (2022),"
Journal of International Women's Studies: Vol. 24:
9, Article 3.
Available at: https://vc.bridgew.edu/jiws/vol24/iss9/3