大東亞戦果學習繪圖 / The Great East Asia Battle Result Learning Map.
Published circa1944, Japan
Size: 21" X 29.25"
A rare pictorial map of the Second World War battle of the Pacific from the Japanese point of view that was published by the National Training Association as a propaganda piece targeting Japanese youth.
The map provides a distorted view, as is often the case with pictorial maps, of the pacific to better situate the theatre of war relative to other Pacific nations. The map’s focus is on the nations that include Australia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Malasia, and Indochina. The map also has an inset depiction of the world in the lower right quadrant with a more familiar cartographic projection with the theatre of war outlined in red.
It is important to note that the Japanese strategy in the Pacific centred in large part on the control of the Philippines. Not only were the Philippines Islands rich in natural resources, but their control would limit the ability of the Allies Forces to establish a foothold in Southeast Asia.
The map went through multiple editions providing an interesting view of the conflict as it progressed. For example, early editions of this map showed captured territory by the Japanese Imperial forces with the use of small Japanese flag icons. These icons become absent in later editions, thus showing, to the observant viewer, how the fortunes of the Japanese Imperial Forces had reversed from early victories.
The map also provides valuable information by depicting the regions coveted resources with different icons such as those associated with lumber, rubber, oil, and other minerals. The maps also depicts the naval bases and the sights of different pacific naval battles and the number of ships sunk.
The map is thus of importance in that it provides a pictorial representation of the key area of the conflict in the Pacific from the point of view of the Japanese Empire. Furthermore, as the cartographic representation of the theatre of war was meant to be used as propaganda targeting Japanese youth, important facts of military or naval power are either comically distorted or omitted depending on the intended message to be conveyed.