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Barbed Wire and Rice: Poems and Songs from Japanese Prisoner-of-War Camps

Short Version of The Barbed Wire and Rice

Author: Bishop D. McKendree

From the Foreword by David McCann: "Bishop McKendree's gathering of songs and poems from the Japanese prisoner of war camps of World War II is a remarkable outcome to a brutal experience....The materials were elusive in their circulation among the prisoners, dangerous to those who composed or performed them, and certainly would have been fatal to McKendree, had he been caught with them....

These songs and poems will also tell the reader something of what their authors, composers, singers—and scribe—lived through. We can sense, but dimly, certain of the details of the physical environment, the personalities of the prisoners and of the guards, and the events which brought them together. These songs and poems will summon forth, for those who were there, a sense of common purpose and experience, of shared hope and despair, defeat and accomplishment; for other readers—and my earnest wish is to have this book find its way to Japanese readers, too—a sense of honor, compassion and respect."

Compiled by Bishop D. McKendree


Additional Information



  • Book

  • Cornell East Asia Series

Publication Details

Publication Year: 2016

Publication Number: 183

ISBN: 978-1-939161-63-3