This study reveals the complex combination of cultural particularity and modern universality that underlies the reality of contemporary Japan. The work uses sources such as popular works of art, song, best-selling books and the advice columns of newspapers to draw a striking portrait of the Japanese public. Focussing on the four main phases of modernizing and modernized Japan beginning in the nineteenth century and continuing to today’s postmodern society, this groundbreaking work uses quantitative and qualitative data to show that the processes of modernization brought a coexistence of generational variation imbued with tensions, conflicts and synergies, that, taken together, provide the key to understanding the structure and dynamism of contemporary Japan.
Since the late nineteenth century, religious ideas and practices in Japan have become increasingly intertwined with those associated with mental health and healing. This relationship developed against the backdrop of a far broader, and deeply consequential meeting: between Japan’s long-standing, Chinese-influenced intellectual and institutional forms, and the politics, science, philosophy, and religion of the post-Enlightenment West. In striving to craft a modern society and culture that could exist on terms with – rather than be subsumed by – western power and influence, Japan became home to a religion--psy dialogue informed by pressing political priorities and rapidly shifting cultural concerns. This book provides a historically contextualized introduction to the dialogue between religion and psychotherapy in modern Japan. In doing so, it draws out connections between developments in medicine, government policy, Japanese religion and spirituality, social and cultural criticism, regional dynamics, and gender relations. The chapters all focus on the meeting and intermingling of religious with psychotherapeutic ideas and draw on a wide range of case studies including: how temple and shrine ‘cures’ of early modern Japan fared in the light of German neuropsychiatry; how Japanese Buddhist theories of mind, body, and self-cultivation negotiated with the findings of western medicine; how Buddhists, Christians, and other organizations and groups drew and redrew the lines between religious praxis and psychological healing; how major European therapies such as Freud’s fed into self-consciously Japanese analyses of and treatments for the ills of the age; and how distress, suffering, and individuality came to be reinterpreted across the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, from the southern islands of Okinawa to the devastated northern neighbourhoods of the Tohoku region after the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disasters of March 2011. Religion and Psychotherapy in Modern Japan will be welcomed by students and scholars working across a broad range of subjects, including Japanese culture and society, religious studies, psychology and psychotherapy, mental health, and international history.
Author: Nanette Gottlieb
Release Date: 2012-12-12
Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines
The relationship between language and citizenship in Japan has traditionally been regarded as a fixed tripartite: ‘Japanese citizenship’ means ‘Japanese ethnicity,’ which in turn means ‘Japanese as one’s first language.’ Historically, most non-Japanese who have chosen to take out citizenship have been members of the ‘oldcomer’ Chinese and Korean communities, born and raised in Japan. But this is changing: the last three decades have seen an influx of ‘newcomer’ economic migrants from a wide range of countries, many of whom choose to stay. The likelihood that they will apply for citizenship, to access the benefits it confers, means that citizenship and ethnicity can no longer be assumed to be synonyms in Japan. This is an important change for national discourse on cohesive communities. This book’s chapters discuss discourses, educational practices, and local linguistic practices which call into question the accepted view of the language-citizenship nexus in lived contexts of both existing Japanese citizens and potential future citizens. Through an examination of key themes relating both to newcomers and to an older group of citizens whose language practices have been shaped by historical forces, these essays highlight the fluid relationship of language and citizenship in the Japanese context.
Spanning the 130-year period between the end of the Tokugawa Era and the end of the Cold War, this book introduces students to the formation, collapse, and rebirth of the modern Japanese state. It demonstrates how, faced with foreign threats, Japan developed a new governing structure to deal with these challenges and in turn gradually shaped its international environment. Had Japan been a self-sufficient power, like the United States, it is unlikely that external relations would have exercised such great control over the nation. And, if it were a smaller country, it may have been completely pressured from the outside and could not have influenced the global stage on its own. For better or worse therefore, this book argues, Japan was neither too large nor too small. Covering the major events, actors, and institutions of Japan’s modern history, the key themes discussed include: Building the Meiji state and Constitution. The establishment of Parliament. The First Sino-Japanese and Russo-Japanese Wars. Party Politics and International Cooperation. The Pacific War. Development of LDP politics. Changes in the international order and the end of the Cold War. This book, written by one of Japan's leading experts on Japan's political history, will be an essential resource for students of Japanese modern history and politics.
Author: Jeff Kingston
Release Date: 2013-12-17
Genre: Social Science
This book provides undergraduate and graduate students with an interdisciplinary compendium written by a number of leading specialists on contemporary Japan. Chapters reflect the standards of rigorous scholarly work, but also exceed them in their accessibility of language and engagement with concerns relevant to non-specialists. The probing analysis of key debates and issues confronting Japan make this ideal for college courses and an essential reference work on Japan/Asia for libraries. This book encompasses a range of disciplines in the social sciences and thus will be useful for a variety of courses including Comparative Politics, Media Studies, Anthropology, Sociology, Asian Studies, International Relations, Public Policy, Healthcare, Education, Judicial Reform, Gender and Minority Studies. The strength of this volume is in the collective efforts of accomplished experts providing in-depth analysis and up-to-date comprehensive coverage of Japan in the 21st century. Students will gain the analytical insights and information necessary to assess the challenges that confront the Japanese people, policymakers and private and public sector institutions. Key issues covered in this volume include: * Rapidly Aging society * Changing Employment system * Energy policy-Nuclear and Renewable * Gender discrimination * Immigration * Ethnic minorities * Trade policy * Civil society * Rural Japan * Okinawa * Post-3.11 Tsunami, earthquake, nuclear meltdown developments * Internationalization * Sino-Japanese relations * East Asia’s divisive history
This book presents an ethnographic investigation of intimate and reproductive behaviour in current Japanese society, grounded in the viewpoints of a group of Japanese mothers. It adopts a new approach in studying the decreasing fertility rates which are contributing to the ageing population in modern Japan. Based on the accounts of 57 married Japanese women, it employs symbolic interactionism as a framework to examine the various factors affecting decision-making on childbirth. The influence of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ARTs), abortion and contraception in the daily interactions and experiences of the mothers are analysed to offer a new perspective on the Japanese demographic conundrum. With strong contextual information as the foundation, the book contributes fresh insight into how Japanese women perceive the idea of childbirth in a modernized society, and also assists our understanding of the factors causing Japan’s ageing population. Further, it places the mothers’ experiences within current global debates to highlight the salience of the Japanese case. As the first book to provide an in-depth examination of the social process underpinning the decision to become a mother in Japan, it will appeal to students and scholars of Japanese culture and society, Gender Studies, and Sociology.
Author: Sven Saaler
Release Date: 2017-10-16
The Routledge Handbook of Modern Japanese History is a concise overview of modern Japanese history from the middle of the nineteenth century until the end of the twentieth century. Written by a group of international historians, each an authority in his or her field, the book covers modern Japanese history in an accessible yet comprehensive manner. The subjects featured in the book range from the development of the political system and matters of international relations, to social and economic history and gender issues, to post-war discussions about modern Japan’s historical trajectory and its wartime past. Divided into thematic parts, the sections include: Nation, empire and borders Ideologies and the political system Economy and society Historical legacies and memory Each chapter outlines important historiographical debates and controversies, summarizes the latest developments in the field, and identifies research topics that have not yet received sufficient scholarly attention. As such, the book will be useful to students and scholars of Japanese history, Asian history and Asian Studies.
Author: Joseph D. Hankins
Release Date: 2013-12-04
Genre: Social Science
This book argues that sound – as it is created, transmitted, and perceived – plays a key role in the constitution of space and community in contemporary Japan. The book examines how sonic practices reflect politics, aesthetics, and ethics, with transformative effects on human relations. From right-wing sound trucks to left-wing protests, from early 20th century jazz cafes to contemporary avant-garde art forms, from the sounds of U.S. military presence to exuberant performances organized in opposition, the book, rich in ethnographic detail, contributes to sensory anthropology and the anthropology of contemporary Japan.
Author: Linda White
Release Date: 2018-05-04
Genre: Social Science
The Japanese koseki system is the legal and social structure keeping record of all Japanese citizens. Determined by the Civil Code and the Koseki Law, for activists challenging it, the koseki is also an ideological structure, which has produced patriarchal control through single surname households. Based on ethnographic fieldwork in Tokyo, this book engages with issues of gender hierarchy and structural inequality in Japanese society. Studying several decades of feminist activism and critique of the koseki system, it analyses the strategies of activists who have creatively circumvented koseki rules in order to maintain their natal names in marriage. It examines the case studies of members of the fūfubessei (separate surname movement) and the movement to end discrimination against children born out of wedlock, and in so doing this book illuminates the contradictions in current family law and koseki practice that have animated a generation of feminists in Japan. Demonstrating the effect of the koeski on family, gender and national identity, this book will be useful for students and scholars of Cultural Anthropology, Gender Studies and Japanese Studies in general.
Author: Barbara Holthus
Release Date: 2017-04-21
Genre: Political Science
Much of the existing literature on happiness in Japan has been produced in the field of economics and psychology and is quantitative in nature. Here, for the first time, a group of anthropologists and sociologists jointly analyze the state of happiness and unhappiness in Japan among varying social groups in its physical, interpersonal, existential and structural dimensions, offering new insights into fundamental issues. This book investigates the connections between sociostructural aspects, individual agency and happiness in contemporary Japan from a life course perspective. The contributors examine quantitative and qualitative empirical data on the processes that impact how happiness and well-being are envisioned, crafted, and debated in Japan across the life-cycle. Therefore, the book discusses the shifting notions of happiness during people’s lives from birth to death, analyzing the age group-specific experiences while taking into consideration people’s life trajectories and historical changes. It points out recent developments in regards to demographic change, late marriage, and the changing labor market and focuses on their significant impact on the well-being of Japanese people. In particular it highlights the interdependencies of lives within the family and how families are collaborating for the purpose of maintaining or enhancing the happiness of its members. Broadening our understanding of the multidimensionality of happiness in Japan, this book will be of interest to students and scholars of Japanese Studies, Anthropology, and Sociology.
Author: Peter Nosco
Release Date: 2017-09-13
Two of the most commonly alleged features of Japanese society are its homogeneity and its encouragement of conformity, as represented by the saying that the nail that sticks up gets pounded. This volume’s primary goal is to challenge these and a number of other long-standing assumptions regarding Tokugawa (1600-1868) society, and thereby to open a dialogue regarding the relationship between the Japan of two centuries ago and the present. The volume’s central chapters concentrate on six aspects of Tokugawa society: the construction of individual identity, aggressive pursuit of self-interest, defiant practice of forbidden religious traditions, interest in self-cultivation and personal betterment, understandings of happiness and well-being, and embrace of "neglected" counter-ideological values. The author argues that when taken together, these point to far higher degrees of individuality in early modern Japan than has heretofore been acknowledged, and in an Afterword the author briefly examines how these indicators of individuality in early modern Japan are faring in contemporary Japan at the time of writing.
The first book-length study to explore the links between Christianity and modern Japanese literature, this book analyses the process of conversion of nine canonical authors, unveiling the influence that Christianity had on their self-construction, their oeuvre and, ultimately, the trajectory of modern Japanese literature. Building significantly on previous research, which has treated the intersections of Christianity with the Japanese literary world in only a cursory fashion, this book emphasizes the need to make a clear distinction between the different roles played by Catholicism and Protestantism. In particular, it argues that most Meiji and Taish? intellectuals were exposed to an exclusively Protestant and mainly Calvinist derivation of Christianity and so it is against this worldview that the connections between the two ought to be assessed. Examining the work of authors such as Kitamura T?koku, Akutagawa Ry?nosuke and Nagayo Yoshir?, this book also contextualises the spread of Christianity in Japan and challenges the notion that Christian thought was in conflict with mainstream literary schools. As such, this book explains how the dualities experienced by many modern writers were in fact the manifestation of manifold developments which placed Christianity at the center, rather than at the periphery, of their process of self-construction. The Dilemma of Faith in Modern Japanese Literature will be of great interest to students and scholars of Japanese modern literature, as well as those interested in Religious Studies and Japanese Studies more generally.
How did East and West Germany and Japan reconstitute national identity after World War II? Did all three experience parallel reactions to national trauma and reconstruction? History education shaped how these nations reconceived their national identities. Because the content of history education was controlled by different actors, history education materials framed national identity in very different ways. In Japan, where the curriculum was controlled by bureaucrats bent on maintaining their purported neutrality, materials focused on the empirical building blocks of history (who? where? what?) at the expense of discussions of historical responsibility. In East Germany, where party cadres controlled the curriculum, students were taught that World War II was a capitalist aberration. In (West) Germany, where teachers controlled the curriculum, students were taught the lessons of shame and then regeneration after historians turned away from grand national narratives. This book shows that constructions of national identity are not easily malleable on the basis of moral and political concerns only, but that they are subject to institutional constraints and opportunities. In an age when post-conflict reconstruction and reconciliation has become a major focus of international policies, the analysis offers important implications for the parallel revision of portrayals of national history and the institutional reconstruction of policy-making regimes.
Ôe Kenzaburô was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1994. This critical study examines Ôe’s entire career from 1957 – 2006 and includes chapters on Ôe’s later novels not published in English. Through close readings at different points in Ôe’s career Yasuko Claremont establishes the spiritual path that he has taken in its three major phrases of nihilism, atonement, and salvation, all highlighted against a background of violence and suicidal despair that saturate his pages. Ôe uses myth in two distinct ways: to link mankind to the archetypal past, and as a critique of contemporary society. Equally, he depicts the great themes of redemption and salvation on two levels: that of the individual atoning for a particular act, and on a universal level of self-abnegation, dying for others. In the end it is Ôe’s ethical concerns that win out, as he turns to the children, the inheritors of the future, ‘new men in a new age’ who will have the power and desire to redress the ills besetting the world today. Essentially, Ôe is a moralist, a novelist of ideas whose fiction is densely packed with references from Western thought and poetry. This book is an important read for scholars of Ôe Kenzaburô’s work and those studying Japanese Literature and culture more generally.
Author: Nicolas Tranter
Release Date: 2012
Genre: Foreign Language Study
The Languages of Japan and Korea provides detailed descriptions of the major varieties of languages in the region, both modern and pre-modern, within a common format, producing a long-needed introductory reference source. Korean, Japanese, Ainu, and representative members of the main groupings of the Ryukyuan chain are discussed for the first time in great detail in a single work. The volume is divided into language sketches, the majority of which are broken down into sections on phonology, orthography, morphology, syntax and lexicon. Specific emphasis is placed on aspects of syntactic interest, including speech levels, honorifics and classifiers. Each language variety is represented in Roman-based transcription, although its own script (where there is such orthography) and IPA transcriptions are used sparingly where appropriate. The dialects of both the modern and oldest forms of the languages are given extensive treatment, with a primary focus on the differences from the standard language. These synchronic snapshots are complemented by a discussion of both the genetic and areal relationships between languages in the region. With contributions from a variety of scholars of the highest reputation, The Language of Japan and Korea is a much needed and highly useful tool for professionals and students in linguistics, as well as area studies specialists.