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Reiji Himeoka

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When I return to Kyoto, where I lived for over fifteen years, I occasionally enjoy going for drinks with friends who used to be my “comrades” in their days of student activism at Kyoto University and are now active in business circles. On one of these occasions, the calligrapher Kyūyō Ishikawa was asked by some geishas in a Gion restaurant to write something with a brush. Being a fan of his calligraphic style, I asked him to write something on the paper coaster of my whiskey and water drink. As everyone held their breath wondering what would come out from his unique style with the brush, I saw the words “Reiji Himeoka .” Among such close friends, I am still known as Himeoka.

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-981-13-2757-5_4
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Fig. 4.1


  1. 1.

    My main targets of argument were the orthodox faction of the communist party under the leadership of the Soviet Union (including the mainstream of the Japan Communist Party), the structural reformist faction of the communist party (under the influence of the Italian Communist Party), and the Fourth International. The salient points of my argument were as follows.

    1. (1)

      As the Soviet Union has transformed into a nation that maintains the special authoritarian status of the bureaucracy, it cannot be the leader of the revolutionary movement, nor can it be the object of support.

    2. (2)

      While still holding onto old features such as the peasantry from prewar and wartime days, Japanese capitalism has utilized this for its high level of development. Therefore, this cannot be characterized in a regressive manner as increasingly following American capitalism.

    3. (3)

      While the strong monopolistic corporate structure appeared as a result of state subsidies, it is the expression of the development of the laws of the movement of capitalism itself (national monopolistic capitalism). It was not an outcome merely of governmental policy, nor is it something that can be democratized.

    Countering this series of “Himeoka theory” that I had written just as I turned twenty, Tetsuzō Fuwa , who later became chair of the Japanese Communist Party, wrote in the party’s organ Zen’ei (Vanguard), June 1959 issue, “Critique of contemporary Trotskyism: ‘World Revolution’ theory that confronts peace and socialism.” In this article, after he illogically vilified my points, he concluded, “There is no further need for theoretical criticism,” and “What remains is to thoroughly expose the essence of this anti-revolutionary anti-socialism, and to crush it as a political ideology once and for all.” With the dissolution of the Soviet Union some twenty years later, Fuwa was forced to say something along the lines of (1); and eventually keep silent about (2).

  2. 2.

    Shima, Shigeo (supervising ed.), Takazawa, Kōji (ed.) Bunto no shisō (Ideology of the Bund): Vol. 1 Kyōsanshugi (Communism), Vol. 4 Puroretaria tsūshin (Proletarian Bulletin) (Hihyōsha).

  3. 3.

    Yoshimoto, Takaaki. “Sengo sedai no seiji shisō” (Political ideology of the postwar generation) in Itan to seikei (Heterodoxy and orthodoxy) (Gendai Shichōsha: 1960).

  4. 4.

    Yoshimoto, Takaaki. Gendai shi techō rinzō: Yoshimoto Takaaki (Modern poetry notebook special supplement: Takaaki Yoshimoto) (Shichōsha: 1971).

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Aoki, M. (2018). Reiji Himeoka. In: Transboundary Game of Life. Springer, Singapore.

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