The History of Japan

The History of Japan

The History of Japan

The History of Japan

Synopsis

Every school and public library should update its resources on Japan with this engagingly written and succinct narrative history covering prehistoric times through 1997. This history, based on the most recent scholarship, provides a chronological narrative examining the political, cultural, philosophical, and religious continuities in Japan's long, rich history in an exploration of why the Japanese are who they are today. Unlike earlier histories of Japan, it brings into sharp focus a discussion of women and other previously ignored subjects. It also provides a timeline of events in Japanese history, a glossary of Japanese terms, biographical sketches of important figures, and a bibliographic essay of interest to students and general readers.

Excerpt

For over a hundred years Westerners have tried to study the Japanese systematically.Scores of historians, anthropologists, and other academics (as well as hundreds of casual visitors) have written books about Japan. So, why one more? Why endanger a few more trees to publish this study?

Simply stated, I aim at a different audience. The intention is to reach the secondary school student as well as the general public with a complete, concise, topical, and hopefully readable history. Without being simplistic, condescending, or facile, I hope to reach still-supple young minds who wish to know about Japan. By bringing the Japanese into focus, this text informs and stimulates inquiry beyond the standard world history textbook level that relegates Japanese history to twenty pages.This study is meant to bridge the huge gap between the overly general secondary school textbook and the too technical college tome.

I do not hope to answer every paradox or explain every Japanese enigma, but only to whet the appetite for more knowledge.My method is to use chronology as a driving force to this study, and to identify recurring themes and overriding ideas throughout Japan's long history. The study is divided into two distinct parts: the almost two thousand years up to about 1850; and the last century and a half.

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