About this issue:
This issue of Socrates has been divided into five sections.
The first section is Language & Literature- English contains a Film Analysis that covers Japanese society, Post-WWII.
The second section is issue Gender and sexuality studies contains a paper that foregrounds the issues of choice and consent for women which can in true terms establish them as ‘free agents’ and destabilize the master-slave hierarchical relation.
The third section is Short Comment Contains a short comment on film version of important German literary work “Die neuen Leiden des jungen W.”
The fourth section is “The New Book” which contains review of a new book that recollects the “Memories of a Dialysis Patient”.
The final section is Children & Maternal Health – Informative Article contains an informative article from the domain of Children & Maternal Health. This paper attempts to show that mobile eHealth services are a perfect companion of the pregnant women in various stages of pregnancy and highlights the necessity to analyse the requirements of the pregnant women and their technological skills as user of the eHealth services arises before deployment of it.
Hiding in Plain Sight
While often cast aside as merely a commercial film without much substance, The Hidden Fortress (Kurosawa, 1958) actually works within late-1950s Japanese society as a subtle critique on national and individual identity. The film functions as a morality tale, questioning the motivating factors behind character actions. The Hidden Fortress clearly distinguishes between morally pure and morally corrupt characters, yet the judgment is based on similar actions. Each character in the film pretends to be something that they are not. Yet, within the use of false identity lies a deeper purpose behind the action. Makabe (Toshiro Mifune) and Yuki (Misa Uehara) are continually contrasted with Tahei (Minoru Chiaki) and Matashichi (Kamatari Fujiwara) because the motivation behind each character’s façade is different. The former characters fight for nationhood and self-sacrifice while the latter characters are only interested in self-preservation and monetary gain. The importance of identity continually appears within the narrative structure of the film, but The Hidden Fortress also visually represents this theme through costuming and camera technique. Director Akira Kurosawa continually uses off-screen space (even though the film is shot in wide-screen) as a “hiding place,” that allows identity and spatial location to be masked until it becomes surprising and alarming.