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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : Asian Studies

Undergraduate Course: The Development of Social and Political Thought in Modern Japan (ASST10119)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course offers an overview of political and social thought in Japan from the mid-19th century to the present through the investigation of major controversies and intellectual tendencies in the Japanese discourse on political ¿ domestic as well as international ¿ and social order. The progression of the course is along the historical timeline, but ample attention will be paid to continuities that connect prewar, postwar and the present times, as well as the fault lines that make the phases of progression unique. Where opportune, comparison will be made with similar developments and linkages that embed Japan in a transcultural context of social and political thought at the time.

All students will be given a formative feedback exercise that will be helpful for the assessment for this course and students' general academic development.
Course description 1 Studying Japanese social and political thought: methodological reflections
2 Globalization and the adoption of a new ¿Standard of Civilization¿
3 Political protest and social mobility in Early Meiji Japan
4 Meiji conservatism and the creation of the emperor state
5 The Taisho Democracy from a world-historical perspective
6 Gender roles, realities and gender politics in prewar Japan
7 The ideological foundations of Japanese expansion and preparation for ¿total war¿
8 Embracing defeat and the postwar order; the Anpo controversy
9 Left terrorism and the resurgence of cultural nationalism
10 ¿The third opening¿: Social and Political thought in post-Cold War Japan
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Japanese Language Programme and Study Abroad 3 (Single) (ASST10069) OR Japanese Language Programme and Study Abroad 3 (Combined) (ASST10070) OR Japanese Year Abroad 3 (Single) (ASST10127) OR Japanese Year Abroad 3 (Combined) (ASST10129)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
Students who have completed this course successfully will have:
¿ Acquired an overview of the major developments of political and social thought in modern Japan since the mid-nineteenth century until the presence.
¿ Developed an understanding of the principal actors and participants in this discourse and the institutional conditions and limitations of public discourse in modern Japan.
¿ Become familiar with fundamental motifs in the political and social discourse of prewar, postwar and present Japan
¿ Gained insight into the embeddedness of this discourse in intercultural and world historical

Students who have completed this course successfully will be able to:
¿ Discuss continuing motifs and major changes in the Japanese political and social discourse
¿ critically assess sources and documents related to this discourse, in its present-day manifestation as well as in its historical dimension.
¿ Present detailed, evidenced based arguments both in oral and written form
¿ Quickly locate, utilize and critique relevant literature
¿ Use knowledge acquired from the course to appraise news media and popular discourses on Japanese society and politics
Reading List
Gluck, C., 1985, Japan¿s Modern Myths: Ideology in the Late Meiji Period. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Wakabayashi, B.T., ed., 1998, Modern Japanese Thought. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Gordon, A., ed., 1993, Postwar Japan as History. Berkeley: University of California Press.

McCormack, G, and Sugimoto, Y., eds., 1988, The Japanese Trajectory: Modernization and Beyond. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsAS Soc Pol Th
Course organiserProf Urs Matthias Zachmann
Course secretaryMr David Horn
Tel: (0131 6)50 4227
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