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Actual Past: Symbolic Policy of Modern Japan towards the Republic of Korea

Student: Gleb Lapshakov

Supervisor: Sergei Akopov

Faculty: Saint-Petersburg School of Social Sciences and Area Studies

Educational Programme: Business and Politics in Modern Asia (Master)

Year of Graduation: 2021

Globalization increases the interdependence of countries. However, it does not lead to the complete disappearance of cultural barriers between them and does not prevent international conflicts. Today, the phenomenon of identity is more complex and diverse than ever before. However, national identity continues to influence both the politics of states and personal contacts. One of the main barriers between nations is historical memory - the basis of any national identity. Historical memory is often associated with complex problems that are usually not mentioned during international contacts but affect the attitude of their participants towards each other. This is an objective barrier to cooperation. Therefore, I consider it essential to discuss using the analysis of historical memory for the development of international cooperation. I use the case of Japan because it is a remarkable example of a country that faces difficulties in foreign policy due to the historical memory of its neighbors. For example, with South Korea. Despite Japan's substantial soft power and widespread recognition of the country's important role in the world, we can see that. However, historical memory and the politics of memory are closely related to symbols. Therefore, I assume that the use of symbolic politics in public diplomacy can positively influence the historical discourse in the society of another state. This, in turn, can improve relations between states and increase trust between nations.

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