Essay: Meiji period

Meiji period is the first political reforms in the Japan history. It ended Tokugawa Shogunate, and gave the power back to the emperor. Japan has being an impact of the western capitalist industrial civilization. In 1860s, Tokugawa Shogunate implement of ‘door policy’, they don’t allow foreign missionaries, businessmen and civilians to enter Japan, also, the Japanese who were in foreign countries were not allow to came back to the mother county. In 1868, Emperor Meiji created a new government, established a constitutional monarchy; economic implementation of the “colonization and industry”. Even they don’t allow the ship factories to manufacture the ship, which could sail far way in the ocean. In this period, they could only have business with China, Korea and Holland. Also it could only happened in Nagasaki.

Before the Meiji period, some places, which the economy was developed, began to appear cottage industry or manual mill. Capitalism began to bud in Japan, hit the feudal natural economy. Under the extension of commodity economy, businessman felt that the old system restricted their development seriously. Then people who was bourgeoisie such as daimyo, samurai and businessman who asked to change the system constitute into political coalition, became the basic form of the anti- Tokugawa Shogunate group with basement layer: farmer.

In June 1869, Meiji government separated Japan in to three government 72 counties. Established centralization political system, also the emperor has the top power in the country.

For the social system, it abolished the traditional identity system “, disabilities, agricultural, industrial and commercial “. The government changed princes and other nobility into “ethnic”, the samurai change into “Nobles’, the other people who were farmer or cheonmin will be referred to “civilian”.
For the social culture, the government promoted them to learn western culture and social habits, they started to translated the western books, even they stopped to use lunar calendar system, and use the solar calendar to instead of it.

For the education, Japan started to develop into compulsory, Promulgated the “Edict sterility test language”, infused filial duty and patriotic loyalty to the Japanese. Furthermore the government also sent students to the United Kingdom, United States, France, Germany and other developed countries to study.

For the military, the government reformed the military establishment’the training of the army was reference from the German, and the navy reference from the British. In 1872, government issued conscription orders, all adult men who aged 20 years or older have to join military service. By 1873, there were 400,000 in the combat troops.

For the public transport, the Japan government began to improve the transport in variety regions. Built new railway and road. In 1872, the first railway line was built from Tokyo to YOK. By the 1914, the total length of Japanese railway was over 7000 kilometer.

For the judiciary, Japanese government learnt from western countries. In 1882, concluded French style criminal low; in 1898, concluded French mix Germany style civil low; in 1899, concluded American style business law.

After Meiji period, with more than 20 years development, Japan became more and more powerful, abolished the unfair treaty that the Tokugawa Shogunate signed with western country step by step, got the national sovereignty back, started the modern generation. Since stand on, Japan started the developed independently, became the strongest country in the Asia, even the world. Japan started to aggression other countries.

In 1894 to 1895, Japan won the First Sino-Japan War. In 1904 to 1905, Japan won the Russia-Japanese War. In 1910 Japan annexed Korea from China. After the World War II, Japanese was lost in that war, and started developed itself. In 1964, Japan hosted the Summer Olympic Game, which was the first country in Asian countries. In 1968, Japan became the second biggest economy country in the world.

Source: Essay UK -

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