История токийских олимпиад в ХХ веке
. Sport occupied an important place in the ideological speculations of Japan both in the prewar and post-war periods. In the twentieth century, Tokyo twice successfully applied for the Summer Olympics. However, the Japanese government refused to support the 1940 Olympics and it did not take place. The Tokyo Olympics of 1964 won full support of the government and became the first Olympics to be held outside of Europe and America. The process of Tokyo nomination and the preparation for the Olympics sheds additional light on the political and cultural situation in pre-war and post-war Japan. A comparative analysis of the two Olympics allows us to evaluate the way that Japan had walked during the quarter of a century. During this time, Japan managed to abandon its pre-war totalitarian past and come to a radically different understanding of its place in the world. The Olympics is inherently an instrument of “soft power”, which has come into dramatic conflict with the prevailing sentiments in the pre-war political elite, who relied on “brute force”, and this led to the refusal to hold the 1940 Olympics. In present-day Japan, these failed games are commonly referred to as the “Ghost Olympics” (maboroshi no orinpikku). Instead of the “true” Olympics, the Far Eastern Games (which were informally called the “Asian Olympics”) were held in 1940. In the post-war period, Japan became a peaceful country, and all her hopes were associated with “soft power”. This policy allowed Japan to host the 1964 Olympics successfully and it increased country's self-esteem and international prestige. After the 1964 Olympics, the government’s attention to the sport of higher achievements has been weakened and the country's prestige has been enhanced primarily through the development of the economy and science, the improvement of living standards, and the promotion of cultural achievements. The bet on soft power proved to be much more effective in ensuring Japan's rightful place in the world.