Femininity, Race and Treachery: How ‘Tokyo Rose’ Became a Traitor to the United States after the Second World War
Article first published online: 15 MAR 2010
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Gender & History
Volume 22, Issue 1, pages 169–188, April 2010
How to Cite
Shibusawa, N. (2010), Femininity, Race and Treachery: How ‘Tokyo Rose’ Became a Traitor to the United States after the Second World War. Gender & History, 22: 169–188. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-0424.2010.01584.x
- Issue published online: 15 MAR 2010
- Article first published online: 15 MAR 2010
Based on archival and printed sources, this article revisits the ordeal of Iva Toguri d’Aquino (1916–2006), the Japanese American woman who became trapped in the myth of ‘Tokyo Rose’ and was tried for treason in 1949. It retells the tale by weaving together the various narratives of her story and pays particular attention to the ways in which the media constructed her story. The larger purpose is to explore why the federal government and the mainstream media deliberately ignored the other available narratives that explained Toguri's actions as a broadcaster for Radio Tokyo during the war. An analysis of the alternative narratives in conjunction with the stories of other female announcers who were not prosecuted (‘Manila Rose’) or who did not gain the infamy of ‘Tokyo Rose’ (‘Axis Sally’) will help us better understand how treason is gendered and orientalised.