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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Student Exhibits at MPAL: Messages for Peace

About Messages for Peace

A collection of music, writing, and film that respond to the horrors of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. By assembling this collection of artifacts in the library, we hope that students will learn more about the atrocities of atomic warfare and the ways that many people have grieved and memorialized this event.

Along with examples from the library collection, we would like to display a collection of 1,000 paper cranes, known as senbazuru. These 1,000 paper cranes were made by students in the Popular Music of Japan class in Fall 2021 after learning to make them in class. Young Sadako Sasaki made her wish for world peace through 1,000 cranes, and our class also made a wish as we all made these cranes--that love and peace would fill the world in the future.

This exhibit was curated by Huilin Guan and Rayna Bell in Spring 2022, with assistance from Professor Makoto Harris Takao.

Pictures of the Exhibit

Image of exhibit title with multi-colored paper cranes
Shelf including book, CD, and information about Misora Hibari, along with several paper cranes
Shelf including books and information about Sadako Sasaki, along with several paper cranes
Shelf including book, VHS, and information about the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, along with several paper cranes
Shelf including the book
Shelf featuring the score
Shelf featuring the 1958 Annual Report from the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission and several paper cranes

Misora Hibari - Ipon no enpitsu areba

Misora Hibari (1937-1989) was an important singer and actor during the postwar period in Japan. Her singing career started at the age of nine when she entered the NHK Nodo Jiman singing competition, where she was ultimately disqualified for selecting a song too mature for her age, both in the lyrical content and her singing ability. Hibari's prolific acting and musical career continued for many decades. At the first Hiroshima Peace Musical Festival in 1974, she debuted "Ippon No Enpitsu," a song from the point of view of a child who, because of the atomic bombings, longs for a single pencil to write down her thoughts about war,