Welcome to Japan’s much-anticipated Golden Week with its first holiday, Shōwa no Hi – a day dedicated to remembering the past. Shōwa Day in Japan is a time to recollect and reflect on Emperor Hirohito’s reign, unlike other holiday celebrations. Let’s take a look at the national holiday that has sparked debate, intricacies, and enlightenment.

To begin, Shōwa  Day is a Japanese holiday commemorating Emperor Hirohito’s birthday. He was Japan’s 124th Emperor, reigning from 1926 until 1989. Emperor Hirohito was awarded the posthumous name “Shōwa” following his death in 1989. Today, Shōwa no Hi is commemorated to honor Emperor Hirohito’s 63-year reign, which included the Second Sino-Japanese War and World War II. It has been said that the festival is a recall of the past, not for celebration, but to give people a chance to reflect and look back. Let’s break down the vocabulary to grasp Shōwa no Hi. “Shō” (昭) signifies “shining” or “bright,” and “wa” (和) indicates “peace.” As a result, Shōwa represents the wisdom that citizens gain, particularly as they reflect on Emperor Hirohito’s rule.

If you wish to understand more about the Shōwa era, visit the National Shōwa Memorial Museum in Kudanminami, Chiyoda City, Tokyo, for a more in-depth look at the complexities surrounding this period in history. Through the museum’s library of books, publications, maps, and permanent exhibition rooms, you can delve into the rich and complex past.