The Founding of the Kamakura Shogunate, 1180-1185

The Founding of the Kamakura Shogunate, 1180-1185

The Founding of the Kamakura Shogunate, 1180-1185

The Founding of the Kamakura Shogunate, 1180-1185

Excerpt

In the comparatively brief period--about a century--since the emergence of the Japanese from seclusion, the West has shown a surprising degree of interest in the culture of the Japanese. Far from having lessened this interest, the late war appears to have stimulated in the West a greater interest in things Japanese, particularly in such aspects of Japanese culture as art, architecture, literature, drama, and religion.

Although this interest has resulted in a number of notable studies and translations, the greater part of the vast store of materials which constitute the written legacy of the Japanese remains untranslated and unknown in the West. In the field of history alone, despite an excellent start by Western scholars nearly three quarters of a century ago, resulting in the translation and annotation of the two oldest extant chronicles of the Japanese, literally dozens of works still await the translator's hand and the examination of the Western scholar. Granted that not all of this literature merits serious attention, a more representative list of translations of Japanese historical writing than presently exists is most certainly to be desired.

Something of the magnitude of the task of introducing Japanese historical writing to the West may be seen in the example of this study. It purports to cover but five short years of the history of the Kamakura shogunate which lasted for one hundred and fifty years. The author has found it expedient, if not necessary, to translate several chapters of an indispensable historical work covering these years. But these chapters, five of which pertain to the years under examination, constitute but a fragment of a larger work of fifty-two chapters. The present study, in other words, takes up only one tenth of a single historical work.

Nevertheless, it is hoped that in this small way the Western student of Japanese civilization may be introduced to a little-known . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.