Chapter 5 - student notes

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Chapter 5 - student notes Powered By Docstoc
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               Chapter 5 – What Factors Influenced Change in Meiji Japan?






What Factors Influenced Change in Meiji Japan?

   •    By the mid-19th century, Japan was changing into an urbanized society

   •    Japan tried to remain isolated but the rest of the world would not leave them alone

How Did Outside Influences Create a Crisis?

   •    Japan’s contact with the outside world was inevitable

   •    The influence of Russia

           •     They started trading along the Pacific Coast and established the Russian-
                 American Company.

           •     The czar gave the company permission to trade with the Ainu.

           •     Fortunately for Japan, however, Russia stopped trading when they became
                 involved with wars in Europe.

   •    Japanese realized that the Bakufu were too concerned with internal affairs and should
        prepare for trouble that might come from the outside world.

   •    The Crisis with Russia

           •     1798

                    •   The Bakufu learned that Russian settlers reached an island of Japan
       •   1801

              •   The Japanese fought the Russians and drove them off the island

       •   1804

              •   The Russians landed in Nagasaki asking to establish trade with Japan

       •   1805

              •   The Russians authorized nuisance attacks on Japan in the hopes of
                  changing their minds

       •   1811

              •   The Japanese, more determined than ever to remain isolated captured
                  the Russian commander and kept him prisoner for two years

•   The Influence of Europe

       •   Between 1799 and 1815, most of Europe was embroiled in a series of wars

       •   At the time, the Dutch were the only foreigners allowed in Japan and were very
           slow in giving any information about Europe to the Japanese

       •   The Dutch East India Company had traders from many different places work for
           them; therefore, they hired ships from other countries to trade in Asia. They told
           all their ships fly Dutch flags and hide any bibles and weapons to trick the

       •   Eventually. Japanese high level official believed they should start learning about
           the west and had books brought in and translated

       •   They learned about history, the sciences and institutions.

       •   They began to think that Europe was a superpower because they all seemed to
           dressed the same and speak and write the same

       •   Once they realized this, and that they were misled by the Dutch, they closed the
           doors tighter, and asked for documentation from ships that would dock.

•   The Influence of China

       •   In 1842 China was forced to sign a treaty that gave control of their ports to
           Britain when they lost a war against them

       •   As a result, China was seen as weak
       •   When the Japanese learned about this, they realized the strength of the British
           since they saw China as a powerful nation

       •   The Bakufu therefore abandoned some isolationist that might cause Western
           countries, like Britain; want to invade Japan if they don’t start negotiating.

•   The Influence of the United States

       •   The United States also wanted trade relations with Japan

       •   1845

               •   The Americans sent a representative to Japan with the hopes of
                   discussing trade and establishing a coal station

       •   1853

               •   Commodore Matthew Perry entered the harbour at Edo with four war
                   ships where he met with Japanese officials

       •   1854

               •   Perry returned with an even stronger force and the Treaty of Kanasawa
                   which opened ports to US ships for coal

       •   1856

               •   Townsend Harris created a more complex agreement

       •   1858

               •   The Harris treaty was signed which allowed Americans to live in Edo and
                   Osaka under protection of American law

       •   1863

               •   Five ports were now open to the US. In return, the Us supplied Japan with
                   sips, arms and technicians

•   The Influence of the United States (continued…)

       •   Intellectuals in the larger domains found the treaties favourable

       •   Others felt that they were unequal treaties

       •   Japan was pressured to sign treaties with Russia, Britain, France and the
           Netherlands. (also considered unequal)
          •    Isolation was no longer possible. Japan leaders felt they must compete with the
               West to meet foreign challenges and protect Japan’s sovereignty

How did a change in policy (opening up) reflect a change in Japanese worldview?


How did Japan respond to the crisis?

   •   Different Points of View

          •    One group thought that it would only a matter of time before Japan was forced
               to trade with Western nations

          •    Japan would not be able to remain isolated

          •    Japan did not want to be colonized or over thrown by another country

          •    Japan needed Western technologies to remain powerful and independent

          •    Another group thought that Japan should remain isolated and declare war on
               Western countries

          •    All foreigners should be killed

          •    “Barbarians” would expose the common Japanese (peasants, merchants,
               artisans) to a different way of life, thus, undermining their social structure/class

   •   Civil Unrest


          1. Bad weather caused poor crops

          2. Japanese began questioning taxes they were forced to pay

          3. Japanese blamed the government for the unrest because they could not
             overcome their difficulties

          4. Citizens were asking questions about all the changes government was making
       5. Samurai began to support the emperor/stronger loyalty to him

       6. Samurai were upset with the Harris Treaty


       1. Farmers and peasants were starving

       2. Support for the Bakufu weakened

       3. Support for the Bakufu weakened

       4. Support for the Bakufu weakened

       5. Support for the Bakufu weakened

       6. Support for the Bakufu weakened

   Leader of the above domains:

                •   secretly traveled to England

                •   did not actually fear the presence of the foreigners

                •   used the issue of foreign influence to create dislike for the Bakufu

•   Critiques of the Shogun:

                •   wanted to create a new government headed by the emperor and no the

                •   increased military armaments

•   They purchased weapons and ships from the West

•   Women broke tradition and began fighting against the shogun troops

       •     Civil Unrest (continued…)

       •     In 1867, samurai from Tosa convinced the shogun to resign and take a leading
             role in the new government

       •     However, the military forces from Satsuma and Choshu intervened and
             proclaimed Meiji was the new emperor

       •     Tokugawa shogun surrendered their ancestral lands to the Meiji

       •     Shogun responded to this with a military attack but their forces were defeated in
           •   The emperor moved to Edo and renamed the capital Tokyo

           •   The Tokugawa Era, which lasted over 250 years was over

What kinds of civil unrest did the Bakufu have to deal with during the 250 leading up to the
Meiji Period?





How did the political system change?

   •    Political leaders used the creation story to their advantage (pg 180)

   •    They declared the emperor sacred and inviolable

   •    They tried to appeal to the Japanese traditionalists by:

           •   Trying to build loyalty to government

                   •   Using the young emperor as a symbol of unity

   •    The Charter Oath

           •   The organizers of the Meiji takeover knew it was important to gain the
               confidence of all of the domains

           •   They wanted the samurai to know that they are this new government was not
               the same as the old Bakufu

           •   In 1868, Emperor Meiji signed to Charter Oath that decreed that future policies
               would be based on a consensus

           •   It took many drafts but the final form satisfied all the points of views expressed
               by all who worked on it
           •   It showed change in all three elements of worldview: political and economic
               systems, social systems and culture

   •   The Charter Oath (Unity of Rites)

           •   1. leaders who did not participate in the takeover would be consulted in the
               formation of national policy

           •   2. pleaded old class structure Japan for national unity

           •   3. promised to abolish the feudal system creating opportunity to move classes

           •   4. men of talent would be rewarded on merit, not on family connections

           •   5. believed that opening its boundaries to foreign knowledge would increase
               Japan’s power

How did the restoration of imperial rule unify Japan as a nation?


How did Japan reshape its worldview and begin to modernize?

   •   New Leadership

           •   Emperor – official head of the government, but did not directly rule

           •   The men who overthrew the shogun formed an oligarchy and were in charge

           •   They created changes that promoted economic growth and industrialization

           •   The leaders of the new Meiji era were samurai who were eager for change

           •   They had two goals: (1) to modernize Japan and make the economy grow (2) to
               renegotiate the unequal treaties

           •   They wanted to be competitive in the modern world, yet continue to be

           •   The samurai looked to Europe and North America for models of a modern
       •   Japan’s worldview changed drastically! Foreigner use to be despised, but now
           they were welcomed.

       •   The Iwakura Mission

       •   In 1871, the new government sent 50 officials and 50 students on a 22-month
           world trip of 12 countries

       •   Purpose: find the best ideas and bring them back to Japan

       •   They gathered the following ideas:

              •   Ways to modernize Japan

              •   Ways to develop a nation competitive in the modern world

              •   Ways to change Japan’s education

              •   A form of participatory government

              •   Capitalism

              •   Religious freedom

              •   Maintain national sovereignty

•   The Modernization of Japan

       •   The Meiji period would last from1868 to 1912

       •   It would lead to the restoration of imperial rule