A History of Japan: From Stone Age to Superpower by K. Henshall

By K. Henshall

In an extraordinary mixture of entire assurance and sustained severe concentration, this e-book examines eastern heritage in its entirety to spot the criteria underlying the nation's development to superpower prestige. Japan's success is defined now not purely in monetary phrases, yet at a extra basic point, as a made from ancient styles of reaction to condition. Japan is proven to be a state traditionally impelled by means of a realistic selection to be successful. The booklet additionally highlights unresolved questions and little-known facts.

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Extra resources for A History of Japan: From Stone Age to Superpower

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However, it was also very common among samurai of the Middle Ages to switch sides. Troop figures given in the mid-fourteenth-century military tale Taiheiki reveal that in one engagement against Takauji (at Hakone), Nitta Yoshisada's 70,000 men were reduced to a mere 100 despite having numerical superiority over Takauji's 60,000. 47 This clearly shows the limits of personal loyalty48 – and once again the prevalence of pragmatism over principle. It forms a stark contrast between reality and the popular image of the samurai.

With not a grain to cook, We moan like the night thrush. Then, ‘to cut', as the saying is, ‘The ends of what is already too short', The village headman comes, With rod in hand, to our sleeping place, Growling for his dues. Must it be so hopeless – The way of this world? Okura's poems give further valuable insights into general life in those times, such as the prevalence of illness, or a cheerless Buddhist view of the impermanence of human life and material things. One surprising observation is a widespread lack of respect for the elderly.

In its refinement, its artistic pursuits, and its etiquette, it rivalled courts of any time and place in the world. However, the more refined it became, the more it lost touch with reality, and that was to cost it dearly. The Heian court gave the world some of its finest early literature. For example, around 1004 the court lady Murasaki Shikibu wrote the world's first novel, Genji Monogatari (Tale of [Prince] Genji). Many of its thousand pages reveal a life of exquisite refinement:15 It was late in the Third Month.

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