JS1101E AY2020 Week 3 [slides].pptx - JS1101E Introduction...

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JS1101E Introduction to Japan Week 3 Gender, arts and culture in history Part II 27 August 2020 Dr. YUEN Shu Min [email protected] NUS Department of Japanese Studies
Week 2: Key themes State formation in early Japan Yayoi period: divided into more than a hundred “countries” vs. Yamato period: consolidation of power, imperial rule. Evidence: kofun Buddhism and politics/state management Yamato period: imported Buddhism as part of power struggle in the court; Nara period: spiritual protection of state [influence from Tang China]—> dual territorial hierarchy Early international relations Yayoi period: “Friend of Wei, Queen of Wa [eastern barbarians]” vs. Yamato period: “ tennō ”, “land of the rising sun” Cultural borrowing from the continent Yayoi period: wet-rice cultivation; Yamato period: state management technologies, the Chinese script, etc—> leading to development of native Japanese culture (e.g. writing system, literary works)
Today History of Japan from Kamakura period to early Meiji period, with a focus on: Rise and fall of warrior rule “Seclusion” and forced opening of Japan Arts and cultural developments in times of war and peace
Activity Read: “The sound of the Gion Shōja (temple) bells echoes the impermanence of all things; the color of the sāla flowers reveals the truth that the prosperous must decline. The proud do not endure, they are like a dream on a spring night; the mighty fall at last, they are as dust before the wind.” (From the opening lines of The Tale of the Heike , translated by Helen Craig McCullough. Stanford University Press,1988) Watch: “Tale of Heike”: re=emb_logo Think: How do you interpret the meaning of the opening passage above? What is the overall mood of the Tale of Heike? What can we learn about the samurai from a war tale like the Tale of Heike?
Rise of the warriors Growth of tax-free land throughout the Heian period: accumulation of tax-free/private land by temples, local leaders, rich landholders, court nobles, aristocrats Increase in land that could not be taxed = Lost of direct control over tax-free land owners by imperial court Depletion of tax revenue for the imperial court Unable to afford police/military presence in the provinces
From local military/police to powerful military families: Farmer-warriors: workers/farmers who inhabit/work on the private/tax-free land; displaced farmers who gave up their land to become warriors (increased taxes—> too expensive to farm) Formation of lord-vassal relationship: warriors helped their local chiefs/lords maintain order in return for a piece of land/rewards Rise of ambitious/powerful military families that even the imperial government had to call upon to help maintain order in the provinces, e.g. Taira (Heike) and Minamoto (Genji)
1156: Reigning emperor (supported by Taira no Kiyomori [Heike] and Minamoto no Yoshitomo [Genji]) vs. retired emperor (supported by other members from both Taira and Minamoto

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