Japanese Imperialism Research Paper

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A nation’s identity consists of a combination of linguistic, historical, geographical, racial, and religious standards that are practiced by the people of a country. Japan has been traditionally dominated by monarchies of expressed the importance cultural unification throughout the nation state. This combined with a common language and a lack of racial minorities internally created a push for Japan as a major power in Southeast Asia. Since Japan was so heavily impacted by feudalism, classes were created to establish order and divide the poor from the affluent. Similar to the class system, Japanese power was split into different regions under a central power. The Tokugawa period or Edo period of Japan was a time of isolationism, which in turn…show more content…
The end of the Tokugawa period was the end of the feudal age in Japan. The Tokugawa period was followed by the Meiji era, a time of accelerated modernization and expansionism. The Meiji era brought Japan into contact with major world powers like France, England, and America, of which were anxious to gain imperialistic control over Southeast Asia. Once Japan ended its isolationism policy, the Sat-Cho oligarchy made it imperative to quickly modernize Japanese military strength after viewing western naval prowess. The creation of nationalism in Japan during the late Edo period and early Meiji era was due to the discontentment of the masses towards the feudal system and Cat-Sho Oligarchy, competition with western powers, and expansionism. The Tokugawa period consisted of horizontal and vertical class structures that were in place to govern the masses of poor farmers and laborers. During this time period in Japanese society Neo-Confucianism was used to create a ridged social order, of which would almost internally destroy the Cat-Sho Shogunate. Society in Japan was frozen in a hierarchal structure that would regulate all…show more content…
By expanding territories in Southeast Asia, Japan was able to remain a sovereign nation, despite western encroachment attempts to control and establish trade agreements. The end of the Edo period transitioned out of the isolationists’ policies of the Tokugawa Shogunate and began the Meiji period, of which extended Japanese reach and incorporation of western knowledge (Conroy, 826). The newly implemented oligarchic form of government that followed the Tokugawa Shogunate made it the utmost importance to increase naval strength. This was primarily due to the appearance of Commodore Mathew Perry in Edo (early Tokyo) in 1853. Commodore Perry’s display of western naval strength followed by aggressive negotiations trade negotiations forced Japan to open their doors to western influence. By entering the Meiji era in Japan, the country was able to extend influence into Korea, with the goal of freeing their Asiatic neighbors from western encroachment (Conroy, 827). The Invasion of Japan into Korea in the Sino-Japanese war of 1889 ended in Chinese defeat and a new superpower in Asia. China’s defeat in Korea was primarily because of the Meiji restoration that took place prior to the conflict. The Japanese victory in the Russo-Japanese war allowed for Japan to elevate to an imperialistic status, comparable to western powers such as America, Great

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