The Taming of the Samurai

Author: Eiko Ikegami
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674868080
Release Date: 1995
Genre: Social Science

Modern Japan offers us a view of a highly developed society with its own internal logic. Eiko Ikegami makes this logic accessible to us through a sweeping investigation into the roots of Japanese organizational structures. She accomplishes this by focusing on the diverse roles that the samurai have played in Japanese history. From their rise in ancient Japan, through their dominance as warrior lords in the medieval period, and their subsequent transformation to quasi-bureaucrats at the beginning of the Tokugawa era, the samurai held center stage in Japan until their abolishment after the opening up of Japan in the mid-nineteenth century. This book demonstrates how Japan's so-called harmonious collective culture is paradoxically connected with a history of conflict. Ikegami contends that contemporary Japanese culture is based upon two remarkably complementary ingredients, honorable competition and honorable collaboration. The historical roots of this situation can be found in the process of state formation, along very different lines from that seen in Europe at around the same time. The solution that emerged out of the turbulent beginnings of the Tokugawa state was a transformation of the samurai into a hereditary class of vassal-bureaucrats, a solution that would have many unexpected ramifications for subsequent centuries. Ikegami's approach, while sociological, draws on anthropological and historical methods to provide an answer to the question of how the Japanese managed to achieve modernity without traveling the route taken by Western countries. The result is a work of enormous depth and sensitivity that will facilitate a better understanding of, and appreciation for, Japanese society.

Bonds of Civility

Author: Eiko Ikegami
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521601150
Release Date: 2005-02-28
Genre: Social Science

Eiko Ikegami uncovers a complex history of social life in which aesthetic images became central to Japan's cultural identities.

Warriors of Japan

Author: H. Paul Varley
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
ISBN: 0824816013
Release Date: 1994-01
Genre: History

A leading cultural historian of premodern Japan draws a rich portrait of the emerging samurai culture as it is portrayed in gunki-mono, or war tales, examining eight major works spanning the mid-tenth to late fourteenth centuries. Although many of the major war tales have been translated into English, Warriors of Japan is the first book-length study of the tales and their place in Japanese history. The war tales are one of the most important sources of knowledge about Japan's premodern warriors, revealing much about the medieval psyche and the evolving perceptions of warriors, warfare, and warrior customs.

The Way of the Heavenly Sword

Author: Leonard A. Humphreys
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 9780804723756
Release Date: 1995
Genre: History

The story of the bitter political struggles within a factionalized military elite, released in the 1920's from the constraints of the informal but unified system of Imperial leadership which had characterized the military in the Meiji era.

The Culture of Civil War in Kyoto

Author: Mary Elizabeth Berry
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520208773
Release Date: 1997-03-20
Genre: History

"Berry examines the very complex and frequently unintelligible relationships between politics and culture in sixteenth century Kyoto. It is surprising that anybody could seriously undertake this immense task. . . . A genuinely impressive accomplishment."—Harry Harootunian, University of Chicago

Hired Swords

Author: Karl F. Friday
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 9780804726962
Release Date: 1996-03-01
Genre: History

Tracing the evolution of state military institutions from the seventh through the twelfth centuries, this book challenges much of the received wisdom of Western scholarship on the origins and early development of warriors in Japan. This prelude to the rise of the samurai, who were to become the masters of Japan's medieval and early modern eras, was initiated when the imperial court turned for its police and military protection to hired swords--professional mercenaries largely drawn from the elites of provincial society. By the middle of the tenth century, this provincial military order had been handed a virtual monopoly of Japan's martial resources. Yet it was not until near the end of the twelfth century that these warriors took the first significant steps toward asserting their independence from imperial court control. Why did they not do so earlier? Why did they remain obedient to a court without any other military sources for nearly 300 years? Why did the court put itself in the potentially (and indeed, ultimately) precarious situation of contracting for its military needs with private warriors? These and related questions are the focus of the author's study. Most of the few Western treatments see the origins of the samurai in the incompetence and inactivity of the imperial court that forced residents in the provinces to take up arms themselves. According to this view, a warrior class was spontaneously generated just as one had been in Europe a few centuries earlier, and the Japanese court was doomed to eventually perish by the sword because of its failure to live by it. Instead, the author argues that it was largely court activism that put swords in the hands of rural elites, thatcourt military policy, from the very beginning of the imperial state era, followed a long-term pattern of increasing reliance on the martial skills of the gentry. This policy reflected the court's desire for maximum efficiency in its military institutions, and the policy's succes

Armed Martial Arts of Japan

Author: G. Cameron Hurst
Publisher:
ISBN: 0300049676
Release Date: 1998
Genre: Sports & Recreation

This unique history of Japanese armed martial arts - the only comprehensive treatment of the subject in English - focuses on traditions of swordsmanship and archery from ancient times to the present. G. Cameron Hurst III provides an overview of martial arts in Japanese history and culture, then closely examines the transformation of these fighting skills into sports. He discusses the influence of the Western athletic tradition on the armed martial arts as well as the ways the martial arts have remained distinctly Japanese.

Heavenly Warriors

Author: William Wayne Farris
Publisher: Harvard Univ Council on East Asian
ISBN: 067438704X
Release Date: 1996-04-01
Genre: History

"In a government, military matters are the essential thing," said Japan's "Heavenly Warrior," the Emperor Temmu, in 684. Heavenly Warriors traces in detail the evolutionary development of weaponry, horsemanship, military organization, and tactics from Japan's early conflicts with Korea up to the full-blown system of the samurai. Enhanced by illustrations and maps, and with a new preface by the author, this book will be indispensable for students of military history and Japanese political history.

Japan who Governs

Author: Chalmers A. Johnson
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393037398
Release Date: 1995
Genre: History

An economical analysis of Japan's current financial status notes its overall wealth during recessionary times, competitive industrial achievements, efficient and inexpensive social systems, and promising future.

Japan Before Tokugawa

Author: S. Hall
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400855315
Release Date: 2014-07-14
Genre: History

These papers by leading specialists on sixteenth-century Japan explore Japan's transition from medieval (Chusei) to early modern (Kinsei) society. During this time, regional lords (daimyo) first battled for local autonomy and then for national supremacy. Originally published in 1981. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Tokugawa Ieyasu Shogun

Author: Conrad D. Totman
Publisher: Heian International Publishing Company
ISBN: 0893462101
Release Date: 1983
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Biography of one of Japan's most important leaders with descriptions of 17th century Japan.

Ecuador and the United States

Author: Ronn F. Pineo
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
ISBN: 0820337269
Release Date: 2010-05-29
Genre: Political Science

This history of relations between Ecuador and the United States is a revealing case study of how a small, determined country has exploited its marginal status when dealing with a global superpower. Ranging from Ecuador’s struggle for independence in the 1820s and 1830s to the present day, the book examines the misunderstandings, tensions, and--from the U.S. perspective--often unintended consequences that have sometimes arisen in relations between the two countries. Such interactions included U.S. efforts in Ecuador to stem yellow fever, build railroads, and institute economic reforms. Many of the two countries’ exchanges in the twentieth century stemmed from the global disruptions of World War II and the cold war. More recently, Ecuadorian and U.S. interests have been in contest over fishing rights, foreign development of Ecuadorian oil resources, and Ecuador’s emergence as a transit country in the drug trade. Ronn Pineo looks at these and other issues within the context of how the United States, usually preoccupied with other concerns, has often disregarded Ecuador’s internal race, class, and geographical divisions when the two countries meet on the global stage. On the whole, argues Pineo, the two countries have operated effectively as “useful strangers” throughout their mutual history. Ecuador has never been merely a passive recipient of U.S. policy or actions, and factions within Ecuador, especially regional ones, have long seen the United States as a potential ally in domestic political disputes. The United States has influenced Ecuador, but often only in ways Ecuadorians themselves want. This book is about the dynamics of power in the relations between a very large if distracted nation when dealing with a very small but determined nation, an investigation that reveals a great deal about both.