Japan in World History (New Oxford World History) - download pdf or read online


By James L. Huffman

ISBN-10: 0195368088

ISBN-13: 9780195368086

Japan in global historical past levels from Japan's prehistoric interactions with Korea and China, to the Western problem of the overdue 1500s, the partial isolation less than the Tokugawa relations (1600-1868), and the tumultuous interactions of newer occasions, while Japan modernized ferociously, turned imperialist, misplaced an international conflict, then turned the world's moment biggest economy--and its maximum overseas relief donor. Writing in a full of life model, Huffman makes wealthy use of fundamental assets, illustrating occasions with reviews through the folks who lived via them: tellers of historical myths, courtroom ladies who dominated the early literary international, cynical clergymen who damned medieval materialism, tourists who marveled at "indecent" Western ballroom dancers within the mid-1800s, and the emperor who justified Pearl Harbor. with out ignoring common political and armed forces occasions, the publication illuminates economic, social, and cultural components; it additionally examines problems with gender in addition to the jobs of commoners, samurai, enterprise leaders, novelists, and priests.

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The most prominent of these was Gyo¯ki, the charismatic, unconventional son of a Korean immigrant family who propagated Buddhist doctrines that offered salvation to all. Until his death in 749, at age eighty-one, he attracted huge numbers of followers throughout the Kinai region, reportedly preaching to as many as 10,000 at a time—and healing people, building bridges, and opening new rice lands. ”11 The authorities accused him of raising too much money and spreading confusion, but he was too popular to be stopped, and Sho¯mu eventually endorsed his emphasis on good works and enlisted his help in gathering support for the Great Buddha.

Tax and land records show that a rising class of moneylenders in the Nara countryside got rich by exploiting poor farmers; they also show an eruption of rural vagrancy, as families fled to unknown regions to avoid debts and taxes. ”7 Poverty and difficulty, however, did not indicate passivity or inferiority; nor did they tell the entire story. The sources that describe the farmers’ plight also show people struggling, resisting, and playing— often quite vigorously. The numerous laws against vagrancy—including a stipulation in the Yo¯ro¯ code that “when a household absconds, the group shall be responsible for its pursuit”—suggest that farmers did more than complain; many responded to trouble by seeking a fresh start in a new location or by finding ways to avoid taxes.

The most influential Nara emperor was Sho¯mu, a son-in-law of Fujiwara Fuhito, who took the throne in 724 and dominated official life for more than thirty years, even though he abdicated in 749. Sho¯mu was an activist administrator who proclaimed the absolute authority of the tenno¯. ”4 To make that proclamation reality, he sent military excursions to the north, into the southern Emishi regions, as well as into areas still incompletely controlled in Kyushu. He became the first ruler to wear Chinese-style monarchical robes.

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Japan in World History (New Oxford World History) by James L. Huffman

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