Japan is an excellent example of a modern nation. “By identifying the modern as a cluster of related principles rather than as merely a period, we are able to trace its occurrence in different periods in different national or cultural settings” (Goto-Jones, 7). The idea of what is culture and what is modern can be subjective. Time and setting are merely measurements showcasing a particular in relation to everything else. Although Goto-Jones is critical of what it means to be “modern,” reasons supporting his opinion on whether Japan is modern or not can be given by looking at some of the changes Japan has made; observations of the dynamic and stagnant in Japan’s past and present. By comparing and contrasting through history the government, …show more content…
Within the short time frame, a significant transformation in political, industrial, and societal means took hold, seeing Japan as a great power within the world. Emperor Meiji’s death in 1912 saw in end of an era at its own representation (Goto-Jones, 70). More change came as the Japanese social environment felt to be continually bewildered by the western powers. In response, this drove Japan to imperialize and eventually join World War II. After losing the war, Japan was subjected for significant change once again. With the 1947 Constitution it is the people who hold sovereignty, as opposed to The Emperor who did so in the Meiji Constitution (Goto-Jones, 96). A contribution and push to Japan's unique adoption of modernization after World War II can be attributed to pressings such as Article 9, which prohibits Japan from being able to declare war, and from possessing military power other than the minimum necessary to defend the nation. This, along with the Reverse Course. This helped Japan move more towards a modern democracy by having its foreign policy based around its relationship with the US, which set Japan as a beacon of US policy in Asia (Goto-Jones, 97). Joint to Japan’s progression with modernity through history is the new found knowledge and technology that developed. When the Westerners arrived with their technology of the toy train, this represented a display of more advanced technology from a greater source of power
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When Japan was at the turning point of its economy and in the process of forming a new government, Nakae Chomin wrote A Discourse by Three Drunkards on Government, a political theory book that primarily deals with question of Japan’s future with an interesting debate between Champion and the Gentleman. Character Champion thought that Japan should step out of their isolated island and become more forceful in its handling of foreign disputes. He believed that Japan will stay weak if Japan did not have the strength and forces to conquer other nations. The Western learning Gentleman on the other side is a proponent of the modern Western notion of liberty and equality. He criticized Western nations for maintaining large armies that drained their economy. He suggested that Japan should abandon all attempts to compete with the West militarily and commit itself fully to the values that the West did not have. Approximately sixty years has passed since then, and Champion, Gentleman, and Master Nankai have gathered around once again to discuss the postwar Japan, the rise of the militarism, imperialist aggression, and the subsequent adoption
The Japanese empire was in great power by this time period, and they thought themselves as the king of the East Asian race. Japan, the “old order”, also believed that some day Europe and America would take over their power and become the “new orders”(Doc A). Japan was one
Although Japan changed in many ways from 1853 to 1941, there were also many factors that remained the same throughout the history of Japan. One such continuity was the maintained existence of a figurehead ruler controlled by other political authorities. The feudalistic emperor of Japan was the supposed “highest, most powerful authority” in the land, but was actually controlled by the military leaders- the shogun. Similarly, the militaristic emperor of Japan decades later continued to remain a figurehead ruler controlled by military and government officials. In addition, Japan continued to remain reliant on exports in order to maintain its economy. As a result of Japan’s small geographical size, the island nation had few natural resources and was forced to rely on exports to survive economically. The nation also grew increasingly reliant on other nations to provide materials and supplies that it could not provide for itself. This complete reliance on other nations was seen illustrated when the Japanese military was provoked to attacking another superpower- the United States, in response to the 1940 United States embargo
Ultranationalism in Japan began once the global markets collapsed in 1930. Difficult times and a growing need for national glory led to increased militarism. In 1937, Japan invaded China and expanded its empire from the Korean peninsula to Indonesia. However, Japan’s
Japan, as known today, is a world powerhouse in technology and innovation. It currently ranks third in GDP, bringing in over $4.9 trillion dollars per year. However, this has not always been the case. Japan is well known for its period of “Sakoku,” a Japanese word literally meaning “closed country.” From 1600-1850s, that is indeed what Japan was; Japanese citizens were not allowed to leave the country and no foreigners were allowed to enter. The country was completely isolated from the rest of the world, even in regards to trade. This was changed in 1854 by Commander Matthew Perry and his Navy squadron. With the Kanagawa Treaty, Perry ended Japan’s period of isolationism and pushed them into their future as a world power.
After centuries of living in seclusion to the outside world, the government knew that they needed the technological advancements that the West offered. The Industrial Revolution and growing urbanisation in Japan had intended to and succeeded in mimicking Western growth. Moreover, the Japanese were well-known for their diligence, discipline, perseverance, and hard work – this resulted in substantial economic development including increased shipping of commodities and a significant expansion of trade and handicraft industries. However, the political elite pocketed most of the profits through influence and corruption. Workers and farmers found it unfair that their patriotic and back-breaking labour only received a little wage in comparison, but with a state-controlled media and education system, they couldn’t make their voices heard. So overall, this collective and nationalistic open-mindedness for communal prosperity was beneficial for Japan as a whole, but the common people were disadvantaged with no access to basic human rights and a fair
Before an American naval commander “opened” Japan, the country was extremely isolated. Interaction with other nations was limited. Trade was discouraged in society due to Neo-Confucian
Evidence of the cultural change that Japan experienced after WWII happened first in family dynamics. Children where no longer taught the ideas of a constitutional monarchy, but of democracy (O’ Donnell 3). From the state houses to school buildings, this form of government was implemented throughout the land and replaced the former concepts of the time. This change influenced the elderly the most. For years and years, these men and women were educated on the
In the 19th century, technological improvements enabled many European nations to enlarge their power and have greater impact on other parts of the world. Those impacts are clearly demonstrated in the book Abina and the Important Men and the source Fifty Years of New Japan. Abina and the Important Men views on how a young woman from Gold Coast, West Africa in the 1870s failed to declare her own freedom in a local British dominated court. The source Fifty Years of New Japan demonstrates how Japan had modernized in fifty years with adoption of European cultural practices. Because the Gold Coast was a crown colony of the British empire, change made by European culture and power was in favor of the interest of Britain. Indigenous people respond to such changes differently based on their different social status. Japan, on the other hand, was independently adopting western cultural practices for modernization, so Japan was able to better improve herself by learning about the Western Civilization.
Economically, Japan is one of the most highly developed nations in the world. Japanese brand like Toyota, Sony, Fujifilm and Panasonic are famous across the globe. One common pattern which is followed by Japan from the very beginning is to import raw materials and processed them to make finished products which are sold domestically and exported. Agriculture and transportation are the highly developed industries in Japan. Japan’s main agricultural product is rice and most rice eaten in Japan is home grown. Shinkansen, or bullet trains ,are
Showa: The Japan of Hirohito, edited by Carol Gluck and Stephen R. Graubard, seeks to find the answers to many questions that are commonly asked about Japan and its history. As stated in the title, this book focuses on the Hirohito era in Japanese history from 1926 to 1989. In the Introduction, Gluck states that there were two main issues for Japan in the twentieth century, “how Japan came to aggressive war and then to macroeconomic might” (xi). The unstable relationship between Japan and the United States is also an underlying theme of the book. The three chapters to be examined in this paper are, “The Useful War,” “The People Who Invented the Mechanical Nightingale,” and “Japan Meets the United States for the Second Time.”
The Japanese scholars were sent to study abroad and observe the Western sciences and languages to transform the Tokugawa Japanese agrarian economy. The introduction of Western technologies and ideas advanced the Japanese economy. The development of infrastructures such as railroads and telegraphs allowed Japan to develop new industries. Transportation and communication networks were advanced from large governmental investments. The government supported the growing businesses and
The Japanese economy had changed immensely as it became a place of free trade and importations from being a place where there was little to no foreign interactions a century ago. The japanese had implemented this closed door policy due to the unruliness of the Europeans in the 17th century and felt complacent in their situation. Although the Japanese government implemented a closed-door policy from 1639 to 1854, their rapid economic development after this period was due to their similar geographical conditions to England. Their location allowed them to reap the benefits of being imperialized because they were able to westernize and set up the foundation of a good economy. They had been able to live peacefully while absorbing technology and culture from the Eurasian countries, this help them develop their ‘foreign acceptance’ as they were used to taking technology from other countries.
Between 1968 and 1912, Japan was going through a reformation called Meiji Restoration in order make the country strong as western countries. It had caused changes in many parts of Japan such as society, government, military, etc. Some of these changes still can be seen in the Japanese society today such as emperors are honored by Japanese citizens and seen as a special figure. Since this reformation had a great impact on development of Japan, it can be consider as a very important part of Japanese history.This study will seek to answer the question: To what extent did the Meiji Restoration succeeded to reform and strengthen Japan? In order to answer the question, the investigation will analyze military reform and economic reform caused by
Japan is an unique oriental country in many aspects, especially in politics and economy, both western practices and traditional nationalism are coexisted in this country. The period 1890-1940 was just followed the Meiji restoration, and was typical in the history of Japan, at that time, Japan was on the way from a feudal country to a capitalistic country, called modernization. Many western practices were being more and more adopted, however, at the same time, traditional rules still had strong influences in Japan. Under this background, this report will discuss the Japanese cultural factors during 1890-1940 that influenced the disclosure