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A History of Japan: From Stone Age to Superpower / Edition 3

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Japan's impact on the modern world is enormous. Its achievements are partly due to luck, but owe much to the way the nation responds to circumstance. Its responses are based on values and practices often deep-rooted in its history. To understand fully Japan's achievements, it is vital to examine that history. That is exactly what A History of Japan does.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Henshall, a New Zealand professor of Japanese studies, has written a lively and literate introduction to the vast sweep of Japanese history, providing a well-balanced overview that is accessible to the novice without being at all dumbed down. Although his emphasis is on political history, he devotes enough attention to cultural, literary, religious, and economic developments to give the reader a good sense of these spheres as well. He even manages to flavor the text with excerpts from poetry and key historical documents. Roughly equal weight is given to pre-modern and modern Japan. Henshall focuses on key issues in each of his six chapters and provides very useful tables summarizing both historical chronology and the main values and practices that characterized each period. A paperback version of this book, if made available, would find its way into many university surveys of East Asian history.--Steven I. Levine, Univ. of Montana, Missoula Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Henshall (Japanese studies, U. of Waikato, New Zealand) has written this to be accessible to anyone interested in the history of Japan (it will be a useful text for undergraduate courses). He begins at the very beginning, with ancient Japanese myths of creation, and covers the Stone Age and Yayoi period, moving on through the centuries, tracing dynasties and culture. Three of the six chapters are devoted to the Meiji Period up to the present. Each chapter includes a review and a list of references. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
From the Publisher

"One of the most important books in Japanese Studies in recent years." - Ken Coates, Professor of History, University of New Brunswick, Canada

"In making the history of this remarkable society accessible to a wider public Professor Henshall has performed a most valuable service." - Derek Massarella, Professor of Economic History, Chuo University, Japan

"An extraordinary book that will appeal to student, specialist, and general reader alike." - Laurie Barber, Professor of History, University of Waikato, NewZealand

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230346628
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 5/22/2012
  • Edition description: Third Edition, Revised Edition, 3rd edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 396,360
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

KENNETH HENSHALL is Professor in the School of Languages and Cultures at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. He has published more than a dozen books in a range of fields. Previous editions of A History of Japan have been translated into several languages, and he has recently written on Japanese History for Lonely Planet.

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Table of Contents

Introduction : Japan and history 1
Pt. 1 From the stone age to statehood : myths, prehistory and ancient history (to 710) 5
Pt. 2 Of courtiers and warriors : early and medieval history (710-1600) 23
Pt. 3 The closed country : the Tokugawa period (1600-1868) 51
Pt. 4 Building a modern nation : the Meiji period (1868-1912) 73
Pt. 5 The excesses of ambition : the Pacific war and its lead-up 106
Pt. 6 A phoenix from the ashes : postwar successes and beyond 139
Conclusion : lessons for aspiring superpowers 192
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Customer Reviews

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