The Isolation Policy And Its Effect On Japanese Society

1565 Words Nov 19th, 2015 7 Pages
The Isolation Policy or Sakoku was a policy adopted in 1641, during the time in which the Tokugawa shogunate was in power, the Edo period (1603 - 1868). It was enacted by shogun Tokugawa Iemitsu. The policy, as the name suggests, meant that Japan was isolated from the most of the world. The bakufu (military government), accomplished this state of isolation by closing the borders, though contact with China and the Netherlands was still maintained through a single port in Nagasaki. The policy also meant that Japanese citizens could not leave the country. This isolation was to last until 1854, during which time the shoguns (military leaders) managed to keep Japan relatively peaceful.

The growing western influence in both culture and military technology in Japan was the main reason for the introduction of the Isolation policy. The shoguns feared that this outside influence would destabilise the country. This policy had a substantial impact on Japanese society.

This research essay will examine how the Isolation policy, introduced by the Tokugawa shogunate, was a turning point in Japanese history. The first section of the essay will discuss the rationale for the policy’s introduction. This will be followed by an analysis of the short and long term effects this policy had on Japanese Society.

The introduction of the Isolation policy was influenced by a number of factors. One of these factors was the growing power of the daimyo, due to access to new military technology. This was…

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