Publisher destroys copies of guidebook using notorious Yasukuni Shrine on cover
Published: Mar 14, 2023 01:49 AM
Photo: Chao News

Photo: Chao News

A Chinese guidebook issued by a local publishing house has drawn strong public criticism for using an image of Japan's notorious Yasukuni Shrine as its cover photo. In response, the publisher said on Tuesday that sales of this book have been suspended, and the publishing house has withdrawn and destroyed all remaining copies, and responsible personnel will take the blame.

The Dalian University of Technology Press in Northeast China's Liaoning Province, which published the book titled One Book Enough for Travel to Japan, conceded that there were failures in content review and moderation, including picture selection.

The Yasukuni Shrine, a memorial worshipping the Japanese war dead, enshrines the country's infamous Class-A war criminals who symbolized Japan's war atrocities and militarism during World War II.

The incident has exposed a "serious problem" in publishing management and the publishing house will seriously investigate the responsibility of the relevant personnel, the Dalian University of Technology Press said. It will draw an important lesson from this event, and will focus on books' quality and prevent similar cases from occurring in the future.

The publisher's response drew wide discussion on Chinese-twitter like Sina Weibo, and had received more than 110 million views as of press time on Tuesday. Many netizens called for a detailed investigation of the incident.

"This is the proper attitude, and relevant personnel should take responsibility," one netizen commented. Another netizen wrote that relevant departments should strictly control the book quality, establish cultural confidence and keep history in mind. 

As of Monday afternoon, the book had been removed from several online bookstores, including and Other guidebooks from the publishing house including One Book Enough for Travel to South Korea were still available online, according to Chao News.

The first version of the guidebook was published on August 1, 2014. It introduces tourist attractions of major Japanese cities and provides guides for driving routes and local delicacies, as well as information about shopping, transportation and accommodation.

Global Times