By Sakoku policy of the Tokugawa shogunate, Edo intellectuals could not have any positive contact with Western civilization, and so Rangaku , Dutch learning, was the only window to the West. In the middle days of the Edo period, Kokugaku became popular while being influenced by positivist Confucianism with nationalism as a background.
Total War Mobilisation and the Transformation of the National Public Sphere in Japan, 1931–45
Kamo no Mabuchi wrestled with the study of "Manyoshu" and called " masurao-buri " for masculine and tolerant style, and he evaluated the collection as pure and simple. Through his study of the Kojiki , Motoori Norinaga argued that the essence of the Japanese literature came from " mono no aware " which was natural feelings to occur when you contacted with an object.
According to him, Kokugaku should pursue Japanese old way of " Shinto ". Through his study of Kokugaku, Hirata Atsutane advocated nationalistic State Shinto , the obedience to the Emperor and abolition of Confucianism and Buddhism. It was a driving force to the end of the Tokugawa shogunate and the Meiji Restoration. Dutch learning unfolded to other Western studies such as British, French and American studies by the late Tokugawa era.
In the Edo period , private schools were opened by samurais , merchants and scholars who played an active part. Their thoughts were criticisms for the dominant feudal order. Ishida Baigan synthesized Confucianism , Buddhism and Shinto , and established practical philosophy for the masses. He recommended working hard at commerce as the effect by honesty and thrift. Ando Shoeki called nature's world the ideal society where all human beings engaged in farming and they lived self-sufficiently without artificiality.
Samurai and Bushido - HISTORY
He criticized a lawful society where there were feudal class discrimination and the difference between the rich and poor. Ninomiya Sontoku insisted that people must repay the virtues , which supported their existence, with own virtue. While the early modern Japanese thought developed in Confucianism and Buddhism , English Enlightenment and French human rights were prevalent after the Meiji Restoration rapidly affected by Western thought. Christianity and socialism developed and they tied to various social movements. In addition, nationalistic thought and study were formed while being opposed to foreign study.
In the Meiji Restoration , English and French civil society was introduced, in particular, utilitarianism and social Darwinism from England, and popular sovereignty of Jean-Jacques Rousseau from France. The thinkers of the early Meiji period advocated British Enlightenment derived from Western civil society. They attempted to criticise Japanese traditional authority and feudalism. However they were finally in harmony with the government and accepted the modernization from the above without the radicalness.
In , Mori Arinori formed Meirokusha. The people who gathered in this cultural association had much in common with points such as regarding practical learning as important, catching human characteristics practically and assuming the form of government that accepted the conditions of a country an ideal. Mori Arinori promoted national education as Minister of Education.
Nishi Amane affirmed a human behaviour based on interest.
Making a Moral Society: Ethics and the State in Meiji Japan
Fukuzawa Yukichi who introduced British utilitarianism to Japan advocated the natural rights assumed that the human rights were given from the heaven. He considered the development of the civilization to be the development of the human spirit, and it was assumed that one's independence led to independence of one country. He said that there is no single ideal form of government. In addition, he insisted that Japan should have gone into the continent externally against the Great Powers. While members of Meirokusha finally advocated harmonization of the government and people, democratic thinkers absorbed radical people's rights from France and they supported national resistance and revolution verbally against the Meiji oligarchy after the Satsuma Rebellion.
In , Itagaki Taisuke introduced the establishment of the elected legislature. It spread nationwide as the Freedom and People's Rights Movement. Ueki Emori helped Itagaki and he drew up a radical draft. However, concerning with Japanese situation, he pointed out the importance of parliamentary monarchy.
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According to him, the Imperial Constitution should be gradually revised by the Diet. Its current led to political movements for safeguarding the Constitution and for the popular election. He did not deeply pursue who was the sovereign but he insisted political goal aim for people's happiness and political decision aim for people's intention. Minobe Tatsukichi interpreted a sovereign as not an emperor but the state.
According to him, an emperor just only excises his power as the highest organ under the Meiji Constitution. Although his theory was widely acknowledged at first, he was politically suppressed by the military and the rightists afterwards. She asked for awakening of women's own and development of feminist movement.
While Yosano Akiko denied gender difference, Raicho emphasised motherhood raising a child and she acknowledged the official aids for women to demonstrate their feminine ability. Soon after their activities were successful in women's participating at political address, the association were broken up by an internal split.
UBC Theses and Dissertations
Overview This innovative study of ethics in Meiji Japan — explores the intense struggle to define a common morality for the emerging nation-state. Product Details.
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The Journal of Japanese Studies. In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Reviewed by:.
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