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…. Japan The Land of the Rising Sun. Nihon Chinese words “kanji” Pictographs NihonNihon Japanese “hirakana” Phonetic Foreign words “katakana” Phonetic.

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Presentation on theme: "…. Japan The Land of the Rising Sun. Nihon Chinese words “kanji” Pictographs NihonNihon Japanese “hirakana” Phonetic Foreign words “katakana” Phonetic."— Presentation transcript:

1 …. Japan The Land of the Rising Sun

2 Nihon Chinese words “kanji” Pictographs NihonNihon Japanese “hirakana” Phonetic Foreign words “katakana” Phonetic Nihon: Japan & The Japanese writing system (s)

3 Japan’s Writing Systems Kanji: –Borrowed from China with meanings intact –Pronounced with Japanese sounds Hirakana: –Adapted Chinese characters –Phonetically represent Japanese words Katakana: –Chinese characters stripped of meaning –Phonetically represent foreign words

4 Japan’s Self Conception Small Country Population:127,433,494 in July 2008 Economy: World’s 2 nd largest (US 13.7T, Japan 5.1T, Germany 3.0T, China 2.9T) Land Mass: Size of California, but only 12% is arable Small? Not really. Objectively a middle sized nation.

5 Vulnerable Too close to China Too close to Korea Open to Western naval attack Resource & Agriculture poor Japan’s Self Conception Vulnerability only became a problem since the Tang Dynasty (China) 600 CE Especially Yuan invasion 1275, 1281 Again in Western Imperial period

6 Japan’s Self Conception Unified population Racially defined –Hence exclusionary and “racist” –Racial Background: Mongoloid, probably from central Asia –Also possibly from Oceania –Largest minority: Koreans 0.6% –Ainu, even smaller (Caucasian native race)

7 Japan’s Creation Myth Izanagi & Izanami Foam from his sword congeals to become Japanese Archipelago Their Children: –Amaterasu (sun goddess) –Tsukyomi (moon god) –Susanowo (storm god) –And others are the main gods (kami) of Japan’s native religion

8 Japan’s Creation Myth Amaterasu Omikami Sun Goddess First born Primary goddess of Japan Mother / grandmother of Japan’s first emperor Patron deity of Japan, “The Land of the Rising Sun” The whole nation and people are ultimately descended from the kami – especially Amaterasu Japan’s population is one large family

9 Japan’s Native Religion: Shinto The Way of the Gods Specific to Japan Amaterasu is the Greatest of the gods Animistic religion Tied to Imperial household  Tori Gates 

10 Shinto Formal and ritualistic Positive and hopeful Contemplative Emperor has A special Role in Shinto ↑ Ise Shrine  Shinto Priest

11 Shinto Ethical system based in relationships “Situational ethics” No concept of “sin” No absolute right or wrong Responsibility is important Harmony with nature Shinto Shrine & Japanese Garden

12 Japan: Chronological History Latecomer to advanced civilization 3000 BCE: Pit dwelling culture 300 BCE: Tomb culture –Definite continental/Chinese influences seen in artifacts –Pre-literate: hence Archeology, NOT History (at least for our purposes)

13 Japan, A Latecomer Yamato Clan: About 300 CE –Dominates in Kanto Plane (Tokyo area) and the Tokyo-Osaka corridor on southeast side of Honshu (see map next page) Yamato Clan Patron Diety … guess who? Amaterasu Omikami Establish early centralized government Early Literacy emerges in 500s CE

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15 Early Japanese Leadership Prince Shotoku CE Early great leader Sent embassies to China Instituted “Chinese” reforms Never ruled as emperor Governed from behind scenes for his aunt Foreshadows “SHADOW LEADERSHIP” style that typifies Japan

16 Early Japanese Leadership Prince Shotoku’s leadership begins the pattern of borrowing from China Borrow & Adapt to Japanese Needs Japan Borrows Buddhism as well as Chinese government forms Brings Buddhist Scholars and Craftsmen from Western Korea  Both these pictures  represent Shotoku in Buddhist forms.

17 Early Japanese Government Shotoku brought Chinese FORMS of government, but never completely copied them Conducted exams, but didn’t use them to recruit Primitive Shinto, in contrast to Confucianism has a death place taboo –death is a pollutant The death of an emperor pollutes the whole city Capitols moved with each emperor’s death

18 Buddhism In Japan Buddhism enters from Korea about 500 AD Korean monks and artisans provide Japan’s early Buddhist art and culture Buddhism is accepted as a compliment to Shinto Both become “Japanese” religions Practiced side-by-side without conflict Shinto deities are elevated to bodhisattvas in Japanese Buddhism

19 Japan’s Early Literature Kojiki 712 CE Mythological Record of Japan Crucial to Shinto Includes Creation Myth Written in Chinese Characters (Kanji) –BUT, the characters are read phonetically, not as characters with a fixed meaning –Very difficult to read

20 Japan’s Early Literature Nihongi: 720 CE Historical Chronicle of the early Yamato Clan’s period Early Korean Connection? –Kojiki’s Census report of about 700 CE shows 1/3 of nobles are Korean families –Koreans emphasize that Japan got everything from Korea –Japanese like to ignore their cultural debt to Korea

21 Nara Period: Fujiwara Emperor Naka-no-oye: 645 CE Disinterested in direct governance Close friend – a commoner – is interested and capable Emperor names friend: Fujiwara Fujiwara governs behind the emperor –(Shadow Government) Yamato Clan provide Emperor Fujiwara clan Governs and provides all the brides Fujiwara

22 Nara Period Buddhism becomes more prominent Buddhism has no death- place taboo Japan builds a first “permanent” capitol in Nara

23 Nara Period Taika Reforms 645 AD Naka-no-oye & Fujiwara complete the Sinofication of Japanese Government Japan has borrowed China’s government form, but adapted it to Japan

24 Heian Period: Kyoto established as new permanent capitol Buddhism Fully Established Very formal culture

25 Heian Period: CE Lady Murasaki Tale of Genji First Japanese Novel

26 Kyoto’s Great Shrine

27 Heian Period: ( ) Taxation system too weak –decay of central authority –Great families don’t pay taxes –Small landholders can’t afford taxes –Grants to temples (also tax exempt) Great families emerge and govern in their realms –Japan’s Feudal System emerges –Great families hire professional retainers for protection as a private army –Samurai is created

28 Finale of the Heian Period Royal inheritance: 6 generations? Gempei Wars: Taira vs Minamoto clans AD Shogun Minamoto Yoritomo becomes the first Shogun Kamakura Period


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