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Diane Publishing Books
Inventing Japan, 1853-1964
Ian Buruma (au)
Makes sense of the most fateful span of Japanís history, the period that saw as dramatic transformation as any country has ever known. In the course of 100+ yrs., this insular, pre-industrial realm mutated into an expansive mil. dictatorship that supplanted the Brit., French, Dutch, & Amer. empires in Asia before plunging to ruin, emerging as a psuedo-western-style democracy & econ. dynamo. The story is one of a newly united nation that felt it must play catch-up to the established Western powers, a process that involved internal cultural consolidation & the manufacturing of a shared heritage. But Japan has always been both particularly open to the importation of good ideas & particularly prickly about keeping their influence quarantined, & that continues to this day.
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