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Japan in the Age of Imperialism

Tokugawa Shogunate, Meiji Restoration, Japanese industrialism and imperialism

Lauren Byassee

on 19 December 2014

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Transcript of Japan in the Age of Imperialism

Japan in the Age of Imperialism
What happened to Japan?
Japan emerged from 215 years of isolationist policies to trade with the Western world. In this process Japan modernized and became an imperial power in its own right.
Revert to Traditionalism
1603- Rise of the Tokugawa Shogunate
How did it get there?
What happened to Japan?
When the Tokugawa came to power, they reverted Japan to a feudal land-based economy and extreme isolationist policies.
Was this return to tradition in Japan's best interest? Did this system benefit the Japanese economy?
Tokugawa Shogunate
Tokugawa remained in Japan for the next 200 years
Caused economic strain as well as widespread political corruption.
Japanese heard news of the British in China (terrified of Western Imperialism in Japan)
With a strict Isolationist policy, who suffers most in society?
Western World Demands Entry
In 1853, a fleet of American ships led by Commodore Matthew Perry sailed into Tokyo Bay with the goal of opening Japan to American trade
Perry's fleet created a show of American industrial power meant to intimidate the Japanese
Why did the U.S. want access to Japan?
Japanese Perception
U.S. Gains Limited Trade Access
Tokugawa Shogun signed Treaty of Kanagawa in 1854
This treaty gave the United States limited trade rights in Japan
Why did the Japanese allow Americans access?
Traditionalism to Modernization
This treaty embarrassed the Japanese people, when combined with the economic and social difficulties of the time it led to a revolt
In 1867 the Tokugawa Shogunate was overthrown and power was "restored" to the emperor (15 year old Mutsuhito)
Mutsuhito named his rule "Meiji" meaning "Enlightened Rule"
Map of Japan
Mutsuhito moved his seat of power from Kyoto to Edo (Tokyo)
Meiji Restoration
The Meiji Restoration was a period of strengthening Japan from 1868-1912.

Its motto reflected the values of the "new" Japan, "A rich Country, a strong military".
The Meiji Restoration was a time of modernization and "enlightenment" critical to building a new Japan.
Why would an increase in Western presence in Japan embarrass the population?
How could Japan become a contender in the industrial world?
How did Japan become a contender?
Starting in 1871, Japanese emissaries traveled to learn about Western ways (like "scouting missions")
There was a major focus on industrial techniques and culture sparked by the gifts and technology brought to Japan by the Americans
What other major culture sent diplomats abroad to learn about Western culture for the purpose of modernization?
Images of Modernity
Edo Era
Meiji Era
How did Japan become a contender?
Overturned traditional feudal government
Implemented a strong central government with bureaucracy and bicameral legislature modeled after Germany.
Adapting to Western Culture
Government Reforms
Why would adopting a Western-style government help Japan compete with other industrialized countries?
How did Japan become a contender?
Cultural and Economic Reforms
Ended the age of the Samurai
"Westernized" the military
Industrial modernization in railroads, factories and ports, modern banking, telegraphs, and postal service
Invested in education! Created many more schools and universities as well as implemented compulsory education
Why does is make a difference that these reforms were internally powered as opposed to being mandated by a Western country?
Meiji Japanese Industry
What was the result of this growth?
Japan was able to avoid domination by Western powers, maneuvered out of unequal and embarrassing treaties
Japan becomes an imperialist power (had few natural resources, needed other nation's resources to maintain industry)
Why would Japanese imperialism become a problem for other Western powers?
Russo-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War
Russians wanted warm water port on the Pacific
Japanese wanted Korea and Manchuria to provide resources for Japan's growing Industries

Russo-Japanese War
Negotiations broke down between Russia and Japan
1903- Japan and Russia headed to war
Japan defeated Russia (this is a big deal because it proved that a Non-Western country could take on and defeat a European power)

Tokugawa Shogunate= Traditional, Isolationist
Meiji Restoration= Modern, Enlightened
In the late 1800's-early 1900's Japan became and industrial and military force to rival the Western world
Full transcript