Early Japanese history and feudalism
Japan is close to China and Korea125 miles separates Japan from Korea
Japans Culture is influenced by Korea and ChinaKoreaChina
Natural HarborsTrade between Korea and China is made easy because of proximity and natural harbors
Japanese do not trade much; why bother?1. They believe that all Japanese are descendents of the Sun Goddess. 2. The Japanese believed they were superior lineage than other cultures. 3. The Japanese felt they had nothing good to learn from outsiders (barbaric) people
Japan: Isolation The Japanese felt they had nothing good to learn from outsiders (barbarians)
Mogolian with cool hat
Tokugawa Shogunate 1600-1868 Society was strictly hierarchical
social classessocial classes were rigid, once born into a certain class one remained in that class ones whole life, and ones descendants remained in that same class.
Emperor during Tokugawa shogunate the real power was in the hands of the shoguns.
ShogunThe shogun was the top commander of the military, and during this period the shoguns had more power than the Emperor.
Daimyo: Land OwnerThe daimyo who controlled large amounts of land. The daimyo had their own samurai.
Japans Feudal Provinces
SamuraiThe samurai were the warrior class. At the top was the shogun himself.Of the approximately 30 million Japanese during the Tokugawa period, about 2 million were samurai.
Samurai like KnightsWere skilled fighters who fought for their Daimyos.Owned steel swords that were made of high grade steel and wore protective armor in battle.
Bushido" (Way of the Warrior)A guide for the behavior of the Samurai.A moral code that stresses frugality, loyalty, martial arts mastery and honor unto death. (like chivalry)
Samurai provide stabilitySamurai in the large cities such as Edo acted as policemen.
Ronin: "masterless" samuraiThe ronin wandered the countryside, looking for gainful employment.
Farmers: Supported the other classesRice was the glue that bonded the social hierarchy. The shogun was responsible for the distribution of this national crop.He took 20% off the top for himself.
FarmersNormally the farmers gave up over half of their rice crop to the system. In bad years the shogun and the daimyo did not reduce their demands. Famine was common.
FarmersThough farmers held a privileged position in society--just below the status of the samurai--their lives were often hard. Rice requires a great deal of hard physical labor.
Japan Has MountainsJapanese farmers developed terrace farming techniques to make use of their landscape.
A place for everyone and everyone in their placeThe shogun passed a law in 1586 that farmers must stay on their land, and only samurai would be allowed to carry the long sword.
Craftspeoplecraftspeople and merchants activities often overlapped.
CraftspeopleThose crafts that were most in demand by the samurai, such as sword making, were highly prized in Tokugawa society, so sword makers had a great deal of status. Hello Kitty! Samurai
MerchantsMerchants, especially those in the cities, were in a position to become wealthy, but they were at the bottom of the social hierarchy!
Merchants seen as uselessBecause of the Confucian belief that merchants did not produce anything, like farmers or craftspeople did.
MerchantsMade their money off the productive labor of others. Nevertheless, there was money to be made, and the lower ranking samurai--were sometimes tempted to accept this lower status.
MerchantsThough the road system was extensive and well-maintained, the shogun prohibited wheeled traffic on roads for his own military protection.
Eta and othersOther groups of people existed outside this class system, including actors and priests, and the eta.
Outsiders had freedoms!Outsider status allowed a relative degree of freedom, since it was the class system that organized Japanese society in rigid patterns.
However, living outside the system also brought its disadvantages because the system also afforded protection of life and livelihood
The EtaThe eta were outcastes, forced to live in their own communities and avoided by other members of Japanese society.
Eta JobsThey held occupations which were associated with death: disposing of animal carcasses and tanning animal hides, for example.
Eta Deal With Slaughter in a Vegetarian CultureThe Eta faced a double religious whammy. Japanese were generally vegetarians as a result of Buddhist influences which prohibited the taking of life. And their Shinto religion required purification following any contact with death.
The Eta are like UntouchablesDiscrimination against the Eta persists even in modern Japan, where lists of Eta families secretly circulate in the society.
Records are Kept!Conservative Japanese families consult such lists to prevent the marriage of their child with someone with Eta ancestry.
Ancient Japanese religion. Starting at least 500 BC.It was originally a mix of nature worship, fertility cults, divination techniques, hero worship, and shamanism." ShintoShinto priests in procession http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/prints-multiples/katsushika-hokusai-kanagawa-oki-nami-ura-5180476-details.aspx
Imperial Family Unlike most other religions, Shinto has no real founder, no written scriptures, no body of religious law, and only a very loosely-organized priesthood.Divine origins were ascribed to the imperial family.
Japan has 2 ReligionsShinto is an official religion of Japan, along with Buddhism. Buddhism first arrived in Japan from Korea and China during the 6th through 8th centuries
Shinto lasts until 20th CenturyJapanese religion and politics lasted until after WW II. The Emperor was forced to renounce his divinity.
Shinto creation storiesA divine couple, Izanagi-no-mikoto and Izanami-no-mikoto, gave birth to the Japanese islands.
The children of the divine coupleBecame the deities of the various Japanese clans. Amaterasu Omikami (Sun Goddess) was one of their daughters.She is the ancestress of the Imperial Family and is regarded as the chief deity.
The Shinto godsBear little resemblance to other religions. There are no concepts which compare to the Christian beliefs: the gods are not omnipotent nor are they omni-presence.
Bi-Religious Culture!About 84% of the Japanese follow both Shinto and Buddhism. The two religions share a basic optimism about human nature, and for the world. Most weddings are performed by Shinto priests; funerals are performed by Buddhist priests.
Bride and groom at a Shinto wedding
Shinto theology Shinto symbol, representing a torii (shrine gate). Shinto does not have as fully developed a theology as do most other religions. It does not have its own moral code. Shintoists generally follow the code of Confucianism.
Shinto symbol, representing a torii (shrine gate)
Shinto Their religious texts give few details of the afterlifeAncestors are deeply revered and worshipped
Worship of ancestors is a prevalent part of Japanese life. Daily prayers are said for the comfort of deceased loved ones.
The Tokugawa Shogunate Ends 1868An alliance of powerful Daimyo overthrew the shogunate after a civil war and most of the political power in Japan was given back to the Emperor: the Meiji Restoration