187S Syllabus S 2010-1

187S Syllabus S 2010-1 - 1 Samurai Japan 1100-1880 Hist...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
1 Samurai Japan 1100-1880 Hist 187S Prof. Luke S. Roberts UCSB Spring 2010 4228 HSSB W F 8:00-9:15 [email protected] Girvetz 1004 Of±ce hours: Wed. 1-2, Fr. 10-12 Course description and objectives Samurai are the class of elite warriors in Japan who existed from the tenth century until the mid-1870’s when their status was abolished. Over this time their roles, livelihoods and ideals changed in profound ways. A samurai of the year 1200 would not have recognized a samurai of 1700 as having the same dress, weapons and armor, sources of income, personal and professional values or daily lifestyle. Their notions of honorable behavior would have been very different. The samurai era of political power began with the Kamakura era (1192-1333) when they shared rule over much of Japan with the Kyoto aristocracy and Buddhist temples. The next era was the Ashikaga era (1336-1573) during which time the authority of aristocrats and the old temples signi±cantly declined. The samurai emerged dominant but usually at war amongst themselves. This is the most typically “samurai” era in modern imagination; including the Era of Warring States (1467-1590) and Uni±cation Period (1568-1615) which are the setting for most modern samurai movies. The third and last of the samurai political regimes was the Tokugawa era (1600-1867), when (excepting the beginning and the end of the period) there was no war between samurai lords in Japan. During this time samurai retained military ideals but became bureaucrats and just-in-case warriors with plenty of time on their hands. Each of the new eras had its own set of samurai ideals, but in each of the eras the ideals of the day had about as much relation to actual samurai behavior as the 65MPH speed limit signs on our California highways tell you how fast people are actually driving. Although actual samurai are quite interesting, there are many popular images of samurai that are mythic and based on exceptional cases or not based in reality at all. These myths--pretending ideals are actual behavior--are both ancient and modern. One of the aims of this class is to distinguish between myth and reality, understand the relationship between ideals and behavior, and to help you learn how to evaluate information and historical sources for what they can tell you. In this class we will survey the changing ideals and diverse realities of samurai as they changed throughout
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 12/13/2010 for the course HIST 187s taught by Professor N/a during the Spring '10 term at UCSB.

Page1 / 4

187S Syllabus S 2010-1 - 1 Samurai Japan 1100-1880 Hist...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online