You are here

Making History Matter: Kuroita Katsumi and the Construction of Imperial Japan (Harvard East Asian Monographs #402) (Hardcover)

Making History Matter: Kuroita Katsumi and the Construction of Imperial Japan (Harvard East Asian Monographs #402) By Lisa Yoshikawa Cover Image
Email or call for price.


Making History Matter explores the role history and historians played in imperial Japan's nation and empire building from the 1890s to the 1930s. As ideological architects of this process, leading historians wrote and rewrote narratives that justified the expanding realm. Learning from their Prussian counterparts, they highlighted their empiricist methodology and their scholarly standpoint, to authenticate their perspective and to distinguish themselves from competing discourses. Simultaneously, historians affirmed imperial myths that helped bolster statist authoritarianism domestically and aggressive expansionism abroad. In so doing, they aligned politically with illiberal national leaders who provided funding and other support necessary to nurture the modern discipline of history. By the 1930s, the field was thriving and historians were crucial actors in nationwide commemorations and historical enterprises.

Through a close reading of vast, multilingual sources, with a focus on Kuroita Katsumi, Yoshikawa argues that scholarship and politics were inseparable as Japan's historical profession developed. In the process of making history matter, historians constructed a national past to counter growing interwar liberalism. This outlook--which continues as the historical perspective that the Liberal Democratic Party leadership embraces--ultimately justified the Japanese aggressions during the Asia-Pacific Wars.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780674975170
ISBN-10: 0674975170
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publication Date: March 6th, 2017
Pages: 382
Language: English
Series: Harvard East Asian Monographs

Sign up for our emails

Enter your email address   here   to sign up for our occasional emails and you will automatically receive a 20% off coupon you can use on your next visit to one of our stores.