Empire of the Sun is a historical novel by J.G. Ballard that takes place in Asia during World War II. There are many connections between this piece of historical fiction and the events we will study during the World War II unit. Honors students will do some their wiki posting regarding their reading of Empire of the Sun, however all wiki posting will be done on the World War II page. Response prompts, links, and other information pertinent to the novel and it's connection to our study of World War II may be found here.

If you are struggling with the reading and are unable to find a time to meet with me outside of class or your question can't be answered through email I will be available every Tuesday during this unit from 8:30 - 9:00 PM at
http://todaysmeet.com/empireofthesun - this is a special chat that you do not need a password to. Simply enter your name and ask a question.

Information about China's civil war can be found here:
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/111803/China/71834/Civil-war-1945-49 a good starting point is at the "Interwar Years 1920 - 1937" section. It is highly suggested that you read an overview of the revolution before beginning the book.

Historical Term/Event
(Links go to secondary source definitions/descriptions, you are highly encouraged to do your own research on these terms/events)
Primary Sources




Rape of Nanking
Kuomintang this has been spelled with a T at the beginning (it will always be referring to the nationalist party)


Chiang Kaishek (same person as Jiang Jieshi - there are multiple spelling of his name) he is also referred to at some points as "Generalissimo"

White Russian

German Propaganda

Pearl Harbor/December 7, 1941
Sino - Japanese War


Wang Ching Wei

Vichy Police/Government (note that while the technical definition of Vichy Government pertains to France's puppet government during World War II, Jim is using the term to describe anything that is a puppet government)