controversy over bamboo grove

I've been hearing a lot of controversy surrounding this book, So Far from the Bamboo Grove by Yoko Kawashima Watkins, which is used as a set text in middle school classrooms around the United States: U.S. School Text Homes In on Japanese 'Victims' in Korea. The book depicts the time when the Japanese colonial occupation of the Korean Peninsula ended in 1945 from the perspective of 11-year old Yoko, who has to flee Korea with her family:
In the story, reportedly based on the real-life experiences of the writer, young Yoko witnesses Koreans' ruthless attacks and rape of the fleeing Japanese and the ensuing hunger, agony and death while she escapes from Nanam in today’s North Korea through Seoul and Busan to Japan.

The book was translated and published here in 2005, despite the fact that it was banned in both Japan and China.
The obvious problem is the book's vicious portrayal of the era's Koreans as villains, while remaining astonishingly silent about the many documented Japanese atrocities during Korea's 40-year occupation. The Boston Globe reports that a number of local Korean American parents and students have complained about the book, going so far as recommending that the book be banned. However, the Dover-Sherborn Regional School Committee voted to continue teaching the book, but to revamp the accompanying lesson: 'Bamboo' lesson plan to be revised. To me, it demonstrates that a lot of people are still really ignorant and insensitive (and apathetic) to the painful history of inter-Asian conflict. I've never read the book, but from the limited history I know, the events it depicts sound hugely lopsided (not to mention historically inaccurate, I'm told). It's obvious that these educators didn't fully realize the deep implications of adopting a book like into their curriculum. Well, at the very least, it has people talking now... I'm not a fan of banning anything, but I do hope this school tries hard, real hard, to expand and balance out their lessons...

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