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Medieval Japanese Culture

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Lisa Clary

on 19 March 2017

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Transcript of Medieval Japanese Culture

Culture
In Medieval Japan there were many things that created their unique culture.
*religion
*art
*architecture
*poems
*plays
*economy
*social structure
Art
*During the Middle Ages, Japan borrowed ideas from China and Korea.

*Eventually they developed their own styles which revealed the Japanese love of beauty and simplicity.

*Artisans often made wooden statues, furniture, and household items. On these items, they usually covered them in lacquer, which was a shiny black and red coating.

*Their paintings were often of landscapes done with ink or watercolors.

*Origami, the art of paper folding, was also very popular in their culture.
Architecture
*Builders in Japan used Chinese and Japanese styles.

*Shinto shrines were built near a sacred rock, tree, or other natural feature that they considered beautiful.

*Buddhist temples were built in the Chinese style.
Family
*A Japanese family included grandparents, parents, and children in the same household.

*The man was in charge of the household and had total control over family members.

*Women were expected to obey their fathers, husbands, and sons.

*Before feudal times, some upper class women could be rulers and own property, but that went away during feudal times.

*In farming families, women worked hard. They spun cloth, cared for children, and worked in the fields.
Writing
*Calligraphy, the art of writing beautifully, was much admired in Japan. A person's handwriting was thought to reveal much about a person's education, social standing, and character.

*The Japanese wrote poems, stories, and plays.

*Japan's oldest form of poetry was the tanka (TAHNG-kuh). It didn't rhyme, had 5 lines, and was about nature.

*The Japanese also created plays. One type was called Noh and they were used to teach Buddhist ideas.


Religion
*The 2 major religions in Medieval Japan were Shinto and Buddhism.

*Religion was very important to Japanese culture.

*It was present in their art, architecture, novels, and plays.
Medieval Japanese Culture
Social Structure
Economy
Farmers and Artisans
*Japan's social structure had many different levels.

*As you learned previously, shoguns actually ran things, not the emperor.

*Under their rule, Japan produced more goods and grew wealthier.

*Only a small group of people benefited from this though; the emperor, nobles, leading military officials, and a small group of merchants.
*Farmers grew rice, wheat, millet, and barley.

*Farming was improving around this time because farmers were using better irrigation and planted more crops.

*Artisans began making weapons, armor, and tools and that led to an increase in trade.

*So they began specializing in pottery, paper, textiles, and lacquered ware.

*Eventually, Japan began to trade with other places like Korea, China, and Southeast Asia.
In summary, during Feudal times, the arts and architecture flourished. The economy grew stronger under the rule of the shoguns.
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