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Demonize a foe only after first looking through their eyes

10 2 1

When his children were small, Yukichi Fukuzawa (1835-1901), an early liberal ideologist and the founder of Keio University, summoned them into his study every morning after breakfast and left them a handwritten "lesson note" to mull over.

One day, the subject concerned "Momotaro" (Peach Boy), a traditional folk tale about the eponymous young hero who led an expedition to Onigashima (Demon Island) to defeat "oni" demons.

"Momotaro was said to have gone to Onigashima to relieve the demons of their treasures," Fukuzawa wrote. "Don't you think what he did was outrageous?"

Fukuzawa's point was that because the treasures........

© The Asahi Shimbun