American Shogun: General MacArthur, Emperor Hirohito and the Drama of Modern Japan

Overview

In the years and months leading up to Pearl Harbor, Japan was becoming the most industrialized state in Asia, as well as the repository of a martial heritage that fueled imperial ambitions of conquest and hegemony. Across the Pacific, the United States was emerging from the Depression and again growing into its role as a global power. Today's partnership between modern Japan and the United States was forged by the conflict and resolution between these two competing agendas and cultures in World War II, a drama ...
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Overview

In the years and months leading up to Pearl Harbor, Japan was becoming the most industrialized state in Asia, as well as the repository of a martial heritage that fueled imperial ambitions of conquest and hegemony. Across the Pacific, the United States was emerging from the Depression and again growing into its role as a global power. Today's partnership between modern Japan and the United States was forged by the conflict and resolution between these two competing agendas and cultures in World War II, a drama that was defined by two men: General Douglas MacArthur and Emperor Hirohito. Under celebrated historian Robert Harvey's scrutiny, these two iconographic figures are brought into full relief, producing a nuanced narrative as well as a revealing portrait of these extraordinary men. American Shogun delivers a remarkable account of the vast divide that led to war, and the unforeseen commonality that helped develop a lasting peace.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
September 27, 1945, was a remarkable day. A vanquished emperor-one said to be directly descended from the sun goddess and possessing a blood line 2,000 years old-paid humble fealty to a middle-class, pipe-smoking American who hadn't bothered wearing a jacket or tie for the occasion. According to former British MP Harvey (Liberators: Latin America's Struggle for Independence), when a nervous Hirohito met the "American shogun," Gen. Douglas MacArthur-Japan's liberator and first foreign ruler and dictator-it was clear that Japanese-American relations would not be conducted between equals. MacArthur's task, as he saw it, was to forge Japan into a democracy without upsetting its ultratraditional society and institutions. He accomplished many, but not all, of his aims: Japan arose to become the world's second-greatest economy and a technological superpower, but remains a bastion of stiff social hierarchies and consensus-building that refuses to submit to a painful postwar self-examination. Harvey dissects the long, complicated, fascinating relationship between Japan and America through a dual biography of the shogun and the emperor-and the rival systems they represented. Harvey is well aware of the book's timeliness. MacArthur's efforts to export democracy to an alien culture, he says, contain "immense lessons for the American occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan." 16 pages of b&w photos. (Feb.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585676828
  • Publisher: Overlook Press, The
  • Publication date: 3/16/2006
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 1,436,397
  • Product dimensions: 6.34 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 1.51 (d)

Table of Contents


Preface     7
Introduction     9
Author's Note     12
Prologue     14
Worlds Apart
The Little Adjutant     21
West Point     28
Dawn of the Rising Sun
The Heian Period     37
The Shogunate     42
Aristocratic Revolution     45
The Meiji Emperor     53
The Plutocrats     63
Outward Bound     69
"Affluent and Humane"     79
Crown Prince     90
American Hero
The Big Country     99
Growing Pains     107
The Rainbow Division     113
The Amorous Superintendent     120
Eroticism, Grotesquery and Nonsense     124
Devouring Manchuria     133
The Military-Industrial Alliance     140
Blood on the Snow     149
Into China     158
The Eagle Stirs     176
The Old Man of Corregidor
Generalissimo of Washington     191
The Two Giants     208
Corregidor and Bataan     221
"I Shall Return"     233
Fightback
To the Philippines     249
Dance of Death     256
Little Boyand Fat Man     263
When the Singing Stopped     274
Surrender     287
American Shogun
Conqueror     305
Proconsul     321
Visionary     340
The Assault on Privilege     353
The Tokyo Trials     365
Fall of the Shogun
Counter-Attack     383
Humanizing the Emperor     399
Korea     413
Old Soldiers Never Die     428
The Emperor's New Clothes
Return of the Samurai     441
Epilogue     453
Selected Bibliography     460
Index     473
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