The journal had always showcased sites, events, and figures in the metropolis, in the region, and in the nation.
However, during the total war years, consumerist Mitsukoshi actively sought out new kinds of locations, such as fields, factories, and workshops to align itself with wartime productivism. Explicit expressions of support for the wartime regime could be found in such features as a miniseries on “Fighting Osaka” and repeated mention of the New Order and Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere.
Continuity with prewar practice can be seen in the journal's sustained interest in craftsmen workshops and factories for luxury items, but during the war the featured craftsmen were almost always men engaged in manual labor, thus in line with an emphasis on masculinity in wartime productivism. Did the craftsmen workshops speak more of the Japanese past or its present?
Simultaneously, the journal continued to provide whimsical, artistic, philosophic, and even pacific spaces. Throughout the war, artists and collectors were shown in their studios or outside, performing a masculinity at odds with military culture. Moreover, up through the final issue, Mitsukoshi's cultural sphere continued to celebrate European artists and artistic traditions.
Did these two modes of ideological region-making clash, collaborate, or simply co-exist separately? Was “home” a warfront or refuge?