Miu Nishimura Journal4

I really want to visit Smithsonian Museum because I like studying history and visiting museums. I visited Air and Space Museum, Portrait Gallery, and American History Museum. All of them were excited but I thought American History Museum was the best of these three museums. It showed us various American culture and history. I was interested in an exhibition called Price of Freedom. I learned wars such as the American Revolution or Civil war. Thanks to lectures from Dr. Ely, I have gotten more knowledge about these wars so I enjoyed it. I was shocked because I didn’t know WW2 was so harsh for American people. Needless to say wars are harsh, but I have thought American soldiers have been good at fighting because I learned many people who lived in Okinawa were killed by them, so the U.S. remained undamaged during WW2. However, I saw some American soldiers’ grotesque wounds, and their billets which were so inferior. I didn’t know how serious wars were. In Japan, it is difficult to know about wars when people visit museums. Moreover, people get accustomed to peace, so most Japanese people don’t know much about wars. Thanks to visiting American History Museum, I learned both American and Japanese society damaged because of wars, and I thought I had to learn history from different aspects.

I also like Portrait Gallery. I saw a lot of presidents’ portraits, and modern arts. People were really interested in presidents in both American History Museum and Portrait Gallery. I think American people pay more attention to presidents or politics than Japanese people. Most Japanese people aren’t interested in politics or vote. Indeed, I don’t know any Japanese museums concerning about politics. In contrast there are many caricatures, portraits, and posters about politics in Portraits Gallery. I think American people understand how important the right to vote is. Japanese people also struggled to get the right, but today many Japanese forget this. To get more knowledge about history or politics, I want to visit more museums.

Through this tour, I could compare the differences between the U.S. and Japan and found to know the differences was so meaningful for me.

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