The Problem of Sovereignty: Manchukuo, 1932-1937

The Problem of Sovereignty: Manchukuo, 1932-1937 positions 12:2 Fall 2004 to the sovereign interests of nation-states and are likely to place the latter “in a painful predicament.”2 Some scholars have gone so far as to argue that nation-states will dissolve with the rise of regional economies or deterritorialized political space.3 However, debate has tended to remain trapped in analyses that address the nation-state while overlooking the relationship of nation to transnationalism and sovereignty in the ideological realm.4 This paper addresses the resilient nature of sovereignty with a focus on the ideological aspects of early Manchukuo and seeks to intervene in the ongoing debate over the relation of nation and transnationalism. The default notion of the “puppet state” has led to a monolithic understanding of Manchukuo and its significance. Most historical work focuses on the so-called Mukden Incident, in which the Kwantung Army drove off Zhang Xueliang’s warlord in 1931; discussion seldom goes further.5 (One recent work deals with the frenzied mobilization within Japan over the Manchurian question but avoids connecting that history with the inner workings of Manchukuo.)6 Such histories leave a fixed image of the region and era symbolized by Japanese colonizers’ exploitation and brutal rule. In this literature, Manchukuo is nothing more http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png positions asia critique Duke University Press

The Problem of Sovereignty: Manchukuo, 1932-1937

positions asia critique, Volume 12 (2) – Sep 1, 2004

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2004 by Duke University Press
ISSN
1067-9847
eISSN
1527-8271
DOI
10.1215/10679847-12-2-457
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

positions 12:2 Fall 2004 to the sovereign interests of nation-states and are likely to place the latter “in a painful predicament.”2 Some scholars have gone so far as to argue that nation-states will dissolve with the rise of regional economies or deterritorialized political space.3 However, debate has tended to remain trapped in analyses that address the nation-state while overlooking the relationship of nation to transnationalism and sovereignty in the ideological realm.4 This paper addresses the resilient nature of sovereignty with a focus on the ideological aspects of early Manchukuo and seeks to intervene in the ongoing debate over the relation of nation and transnationalism. The default notion of the “puppet state” has led to a monolithic understanding of Manchukuo and its significance. Most historical work focuses on the so-called Mukden Incident, in which the Kwantung Army drove off Zhang Xueliang’s warlord in 1931; discussion seldom goes further.5 (One recent work deals with the frenzied mobilization within Japan over the Manchurian question but avoids connecting that history with the inner workings of Manchukuo.)6 Such histories leave a fixed image of the region and era symbolized by Japanese colonizers’ exploitation and brutal rule. In this literature, Manchukuo is nothing more

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positions asia critiqueDuke University Press

Published: Sep 1, 2004

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