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Chapter 19

Chapter 19 Japan in Turmoil.docx

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East Asian Studies
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Chapter19JapaninTurmoil(1800-1867) Domestic Secessions (1800-1842) - Village officials organized regional leagues, inserting a new level of administration between the village and ruling authority - Ninomiya Sontoku revitalized villages, increasing their population and bringing fields back into production Domainal Reforms - Rural entrepreneurs sought new ways to bolster their prestige - Sought marriage partners of similar background a day’s walk or more away - They educated themselves and also educated their daughters to standards beyond what could be achieved by an ordinary cultivator - Studied Chinese philosophy and classical poetry as well as Western science and geography - Took up swordsmanship - Government verged on bankruptcy - Most domains sought to reduce expenditures by cutting cost - Concerned that luxury-loving commoners both threatened samurai privilege and encouraged samurai extravagance, governments issued sumptuary legislation forbidding socially inferior people to wear silk garments, ornamental hairpins, etc. - Low-ranking samurai proposed that men of talent and ability be promoted to decision making positions Religion and Play - One secessionist response to economic dislocation and political ineptitude came in the form of new religions - As part of a reform effort in 1841, the shogunate tried to curtail what it saw as the excesses of urban culture - Shogunate condemned extravagance and ordered commoners not to dress, eat, or house themselves above their station Foreign Affairs (1783-1858) - Russians were the first foreigners to encroach on Japan - 18 century they started to trade The Closing of Japan - Shogunate issed new instructions for dealing with Westerners. - The shogunate was closing the country to the west, its first truly isolationist policy Shinron argued that: - Trade would weaken Japan because Japan would lose precious metals, and the pursuit of novelty and luxury items would erode the people’s moral fiber An adviser—Aizawa - Convince the shogunate to launch educational religious, and military initiatives that would reform the armed forces by allowing daimyo to recruit cultivators as soldiers and educate the masses in Japan’s unique spiritual essence - Mito Reform movement of 1830s largely involved strengthening coastal defenses - Domains also mobilized militia to man coastal lookout points and serve as a first line of defense - Building coastal fortific
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