This electronic edition is a revision of the fifth edition of Japan: A Country Study, published in 1992. It provides updated information on one of the most economically powerful nations in the world in a period of significant economic change. Although much of what was reported in 1992 has remained the same in regard to traditional behavior and organizational dynamics, world events have continued to shape Japanese domestic and international policies. Improved relations with virtually all countries of the Asia-Pacific region, democracy movements in Eastern Europe, the demise of the Soviet Union, volatile changes in the Middle East, peacekeeping ventures in the post-Cold War world, economic uncertainty throughout the world, competition for international markets, high-technology developments, and the whole panoply of Japanese relations with its major business and security partner, the United States, have all affected Japan as it moves toward a new century.
The aim of the authors of the revised edition of Japan: A Country Study has been to analyze Japanese society with respect to its ancient traditions and postwar transformation. Both its long historical and societal evolution and its emergence in the second half of the twentieth century as a major actor on the international political and economic scene are considered in depth.
The Hepburn system of romanization is used for Japanese personal names, which generally appear in standard order, with the family name first. In cases of certain well-known historical figures, such as Tokugawa Ieyasu (Ieyasu), or members of famous families, such as the Fujiwara, the individual is referred to by the given name. The spelling of place-names follows usage of the United States Board on Geographic Names. The pinyin system of romanization is used for most Chinese names and terms.
Users of this book are encouraged to consult the chapter bibliographies at the end of the book. Selected specialized bibliographies have been listed in the Bibliography for those wishing to do further reading and research. Additionally, users may wish to use other bibliographies, such as the Japan Foundation's Catalogue of Books in English on Japan, 1945-81 (Tokyo, 1986) and An Introductory Bibliography for Japanese Studies (4 vols., Tokyo, 1975-82), which covers Japanese-language materials; the Association for Asian Studies' Bibliography of Asian Studies (Ann Arbor, annual) and Frank Joseph Shulman's Japan (World Bibliography Series, 103; Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO, 1989), both of which include entries in English, Japanese, and other languages; and the Kokusai Bunka Shinkokai's K.B.S. Bibliography of Standard Reference Books for Japanese Studies (Tokyo, semiannual editions), a comprehensive listing of Japanese-language materials. Other useful bibliographies of Japanese-language sources are John W. Hall's Japanese History: A Guide to Japanese Reference and Research Materials (1954) and Naomi Fukuda's Japanese History: A Guide to Survey Histories (1984-86), both of which were published by the Center for Japanese Studies at the University of Michigan.
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