Peace Memorial Museum spotlights Robert Jungk, journalist who conveyed the danger of atomic bombs

by Michiko Tanaka, Staff Writer

An exhibition commemorating the 100th anniversary of the birth of Robert Jungk (1913-1994), an Austrian journalist, is being held in the east wing of Peace Memorial Museum in downtown Hiroshima. During his life, Mr. Jungk made ongoing efforts to convey to the world the danger of atomic bombs and nuclear power plants. The exhibition will run until March 28 and admission is free.

The museum has organized Mr. Jungk’s achievements and his ties to Hiroshima into 12 display panels, which include photographs and a chronology. Mr. Jungk’s autographed books are also being shown.

According to the museum, Mr. Jungk visited Hiroshima five times between 1957 and 1980. His book entitled Strahlen Aus Der Asche, or Children of the Ashes: The People of Hiroshima After the Bomb, was published in 1959, following his first visit to Hiroshima. The book was translated into more than ten languages and became a worldwide bestseller.

The book also introduced the story of Sadako Sasaki, a Japanese girl who developed leukemia, and died of her radiation-related illness ten years after she was exposed to the atomic bombing. Mr. Jungk’s book is said to have helped spread to the world the story of how Sadako folded paper cranes with the hope that she would recover from the disease.

The Outreach Division of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum stated, “Mr. Jungk conveyed to the world that the suffering in Hiroshima was continuing even more than ten years after the bombing. We would like people to know about the efforts he made.”

(Originally published on February 21, 2013)