Reflection of Modern East Asia

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From covering Japan’s perilous imperial rule to analyzing Korea’s ambivalent adoption of democratic governance, Modern East Asia explored a broad range of subjects important for one who aspires to understand Asia holistically. Much time was even spent examining China’s horrid history at the hands of foreign meddling, giving insight into a nation feared as the future #1 economic power of the world. Although we covered a broad range of topics, each was given particular attention, never skipping major events or characters which shaped Asia’s history over the last several hundred years. Essentially, this class provided an open atmosphere for students to learn the intricate history of major Asian countries in addition to sharing ideas on the effectiveness of their pre-modern governance. Our preliminary class gave a brief, yet detailed outline of major events affecting the East Asian region. Within that class, prompted by our limited geographical knowledge of Asia, we were given a fundamental explanation of the geographical locations of the various events taking place in the region. In subsequent classes, we were introduced to the major wars, political shifts, and economic interests which shaped Japan, China and Korea to what they are today. We examined the paradigm of pre-modern Japanese governance, the Shogunate, and the trained warriors which defended lord and land, Samurai. In addition, we examined the socio-economic classes of Medieval Japan, which included the Samurai, peasants, craftsmen, and the merchants. We also examined pre-1945 Japan’s policies toward foreign entities, notably the Sakoku Policy, which sought to expunge all foreign presence and commerce in an effort to protect its borders and culture. 1945, however, saw ... ... middle of paper ... ...ussions on Japan’s history, we can now understand why Japan’s emperor remains a significant figurehead in modern Japanese society. Finally, due to our examination of Korea’s colonized past; we now have a clearer indication as to the reason behind their modern day divide. Works Cited O'Bryan, Scott. 2009. Growth Idea : Purpose and Prosperity in Postwar Japan. University of Hawaii Press, 2009. eBook Collection (EBSCOhost), EBSCOhost (accessed December 4, 2011). Fay, Peter Ward. 1997. Opium War, 1840-1842 : Barbarians in the Celestial Empire in the Early Part of the Nineteenth Century and the War By Which They Forced Her Gates Ajar. University of North Carolina Press, 1997. eBook Collection (EBSCOhost), EBSCOhost (accessed December 4, 2011). Ibid Deal, William E. 2006. Handbook to Life in Medieval and Early Modern Japan. Facts on File, Inc., 2006. eBook
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