A History of Japan: From Stone Age to Superpower

Paperback | May 15, 2012

byKenneth Henshall

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Japan's impact on the modern world has been enormous. It occupies just one 300th of the planet's land area, yet came to wield one sixth of the world's economic power. Just 150 years ago it was an obscure land of paddy fields and feudal despots. Within 50 years it became a major imperial power – it's so-called 'First Miracle'. After defeat in the Second World War, when Japan came close to annihilation, within 25 years it recovered remarkably to become the world's third biggest economy – it's 'Second Miracle'. It is now not only an economic superpower, but also a technological and cultural superpower. True miracles have no explanation: Japan's 'miracles' do. The nation's success lies in deeply ingrained historical values, such as a pragmatic determination to succeed. The world can learn much from Japan, and its story is told in these pages.

Covering the full sweep of Japanese history, from ancient to contemporary, this book explores Japan's enormous impact on the modern world, and how vital it is to examine the past and culture of the country in order to full understand its achievements and responses. Now in its third edition, this book is usefully updated and revised.

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Japan's impact on the modern world has been enormous. It occupies just one 300th of the planet's land area, yet came to wield one sixth of the world's economic power. Just 150 years ago it was an obscure land of paddy fields and feudal despots. Within 50 years it became a major imperial power – it's so-called 'First Miracle'. After def...

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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Format:PaperbackDimensions:304 pages, 8.47 × 5.52 × 0.71 inPublished:May 15, 2012Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230346626

ISBN - 13:9780230346628

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Preface to the third edition
Introduction: Japan and History
From the Stone Age to Statehood: Myths, Prehistory, and Ancient History
Of Courtiers and Warriors: Early and Medieval History (710-1600)
The Closed Country: The Tokugawa Period (1600-1868)
Building a Modern Nation: The Meiji Period (1868-1912)
The Excesses of Ambition: The Pacific War and its Lead-up
A Phoenix from the Ashes: Post-War Successes and Beyond
Conclusion: Lessons for Aspiring Superpowers
References
Glossary of Japanese Terms
Index

Editorial Reviews

"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