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窗边的小豆豆 - 2016-02-14 22:52:56
[Article:English][Language:中文][Book/Text:Non-fiction][World:Asia:Japan]

I finished to read “窗边的小豆豆”, it is a Chinese version of famous Japanese book “窓ぎわのトットちゃん”(by Tetsuko Kuroyanagi) or "Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window".

I already read “トットちゃんとトットちゃんたち”("Totto-chan's children"). It is a record of the journey that Ms. Kuroyanagi had visited poor countries as a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF. Many children suffered from a civil war, unhygienic conditions, preventable disease and hunger.

Addition, I hadn't read “窗边的小豆豆” in any languages, therefore initially I thought the book is also a record of children in poor countries. But in fact, it is a non-fictional autobiography of Ms. Kuroyanagi's childhood.

In the childhood, Ms. Kuroyanagi called herself "Totto-chan"(小豆豆/xiao doudou in the Chinese book). Because she is very naughty, she had to drop out of general schools. Finally she enrolled a very unique school called "Tomoe academy"(巴学园/ba xueyuan in the book).

Probably everyone imagined once "if my classroom is a train..." but everyone also know it is just a fantasy. However, it wasn't a fantasy. The academy had used remodeling trains as classrooms.

Educational policies of the academy also are very unique. For example, the academy didn't conduct a lesson as other schools. Instead, a teacher wrote today's tasks on a blackboard first, each student may study the tasks in any order.

The original version of the book published on 1981, and this is the story before the end of the World War 2, but Japan in the 21st century still has same problems.

The principal of the academy is a very gentle person, Totto-chan had never seen that he gets angry. But someday, he got angry with a teacher because the teacher blurted out careless words that may hurt a disabled child. The principal always made an effort to give self-confidence to each child even if who has a disability.

In contemporary Japan, many people, sometimes famous people or politicians who show discriminatory opinions to the public like "the disabled are useless", "the disabled have to die" without any shame.

Someday, when Totto-chan was returning from the academy to her home, a boy suddenly threw an insulting voice to her "Korean!" She was surprised, told her mother about it. The mother wept and told her that the boy is a Korean. Because he has been subjected to insults, he believed "Korean" is an insulting word. You are a Japanese, he is a Korean, but he is a child the same as you, so you must not discriminate absolutely.

It is a story before the end of the World War 2, at this time many Japanese had looked down Korean and other Asian people. I have respect for her mother. In the 21st century, racists often appear on the major cities in Japan, they shout "kill Koreans!", "cockroach!", "I'll open Tsuruhashi(*) massacre". Police protect them and interfere anti-racist protesters. And of course, PM of Japan is a racist.

(*)A city in Osaka prefecture. There is one of the biggest Korean-towns in Japan.

"Totto-chan's children", it published on 1997, it showed us about hardship of people, especially children in poor and dangerous countries. However, on 2015, a Japanese foolish racist drew an illustration insulting refugees "good idea, let's do a refugee". Of course, the illustration was blamed by many people around the world. But the problem wasn't finished. Surprisingly, an illustrated book by the racist that has been published by Senrindo, a Japanese publisher that published a lot of discriminatory books.

Sometimes I can't believe that I live in a developed country of the 21st century.

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