Everyday Things in Premodern Japan: The Hidden Legacy of Material Culture / Edition 1

Everyday Things in Premodern Japan: The Hidden Legacy of Material Culture / Edition 1

by Susan B. Hanley
     
 

ISBN-10: 0520218124

ISBN-13: 9780520218123

Pub. Date: 06/08/1999

Publisher: University of California Press

Japan was the only non-Western nation to industrialize before 1900. Its leap into the modern era has stimulated vigorous debates among historians and social scientists. Were the Japanese people somehow better prepared for industrialization than people of other countries? In this book, Susan B. Hanley looks to life in Japan before industrialization for answers. Hanley…  See more details below

Overview

Japan was the only non-Western nation to industrialize before 1900. Its leap into the modern era has stimulated vigorous debates among historians and social scientists. Were the Japanese people somehow better prepared for industrialization than people of other countries? In this book, Susan B. Hanley looks to life in Japan before industrialization for answers. Hanley focuses on the level of physical well-being of ordinary Japanese people in the three centuries prior to the modern era (the Tokugawa period, 1600-1868). Whereas others have used income levels to conclude that the Japanese household was relatively poor in those centuries, Hanley examines consumption patterns - of food, clothing, and housing - and discovers that the overall level of well-being there was much higher than previously understood. Analysis of hygiene and public sanitation shows Japan to have been at least as healthful as nineteenth-century England, nearly a century after industrialization began there. Perhaps even more far-reaching than Hanley's conclusions about Japan in the nineteenth century are her insights into the importance of physical well-being as a key indicator of living standards in premodern cultures. Using Hanley's methods, scholars in all areas of history will be able to compare widely differing cultures more meaningfully. Her discoveries and her new approach will be useful to anyone interested in the effects of modernization on daily life.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780520218123
Publisher:
University of California Press
Publication date:
06/08/1999
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
227
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Preface
Note on Transliteration
1The Level of Physical Well-Being in Tokugawa Japan1
2Housing and Furnishings25
3A Resource-Efficient Culture51
4A Healthful Lifestyle77
5Urban Sanitation and Physical Well-Being104
6Demographic Patterns and Well-Being129
7Stability in Transition: From the Tokugawa Period to the Meiji Period155
8Physical Well-Being: A Comparative Perspective176
Glossary199
Index205

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >