The United Red Army on Screen: Cinema, Aesthetics and The Politics of Memory

Research output: Book/ReportBook


In 1972, the radical left wing United Red Army (URA) became notorious in Japan when, after a protracted police siege, news emerged that the group had killed 12 of its own members during physical and ideological training exercises. In the wake of these revelations, media coverage produced a particular aesthetic for sensing the incident characterised by madness and aberrant sexuality. This aesthetic went on to delimit what was perceptible about the incident and the politics it came to represent, putting an end to the already dwindling Japanese New Left movement, but also having a lasting impact on political activism in Japan. This book investigates how films made about the URA incident since the 1990s have engaged with, reproduced and contested this aesthetic of remembering the URA, discussing the very different ways in which directors have grappled with questions of narrativisation, trauma, intergenerational connection and political subjectivity as they engage in the politics of cultural memory on screen.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBasingstoke
PublisherPalgrave Macmillian
Number of pages156
ISBN (Electronic)9781137480354, 9781137480361
ISBN (Print)9781137480347
Publication statusPublished - 18 Sep 2015

Publication series

NamePalgrave Macmillan Memory Studies
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan


  • Asian Studies
  • Asian Media and Cultural Studies
  • Cultural and Media Studies
  • memory studies

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The United Red Army on Screen: Cinema, Aesthetics and The Politics of Memory'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this