Japanese Pictorial Map of the World
1933 (dated) 29.75 x 42 in (75.565 x 106.68 cm)
A remarkable 1933 Japanese issue pictorial map of the world drawn by Keizo Shimada and published by Yasutarou Sato. Centered on the Japanese Empire, which is highlighted in Red and includes both Taiwan and Korea, this map extends to cover the world with the exception of the Atlantic, which is only minimally addressed. The map presents a delightful array of vignettes intended to illustrate regional culture, flora, and fauna. Some of the images, despite being unbearably 'kawaii' are decidedly not politically correct, such as the rather intimidating looking Indian Chief in the Rocky Mountains. Despite the map's playful nature, Japan had already begun its grab for power in East Asia and the military aspect of the map is clear. Japanese destroyers patrol the western Pacific just as American destroyers stand watch on the Pacific Coast and in Hawaii. War was coming.
This map is quite rare. We have been able to identify only one other example housed in the David Rumsey Collection.
Keizo Shimada (May 3, 1900 - 1973) was an early Japanese mangaka or cartoon artist. Keizo was born in Tokyo and notable for being almost entirely self taught. He created 'The Adventures of Dankichi' ('Boken Dankichi') for Shonen Club in the 1930s, which was one of the most popular Japanese comics during World War II, because it imparted a dream of easy wealth. It told the story of a boy, who shipwrecks on an island in the South Pacific with his mouse, and becomes chief of the natives. Shimada was often criticized after the War because his comics often justified Japanese aggression.
Average. Map has been professionally repaired and restored. It is backed on archival tissue but the remnants of old fold splits and other tears remain apparent. Please use zoom.