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Essay The Role of the Emperor in Meiji Japan

Assignment id 1003109
Discipline Biology
Assignment type Essay
Words 1878
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In this historical context the Meiji leaders realized that they had to exploit the notion of the Imperial Will so as to govern effectively. During the time of Imperialism, members of the Satsuma and Choshu, among the very powerful clans in Japan, were elements of their opposition to international imperialism. This opposition believed that the only way that Japan will endure the encroachment of the foreigners was to rally round the Emperor. The supporters of the royal government, known as imperialists, claimed that the Tokugawa Shogunate had dropped its imperial mandate to perform the Imperial Will because it had capitulated to Western forces by letting them open up Japan to trade. During this period the ideas of this imperialists gained increasing support among Japanese citizens and intellectuals who taught at recently established colleges and composed revisionist history books that claimed that historically the Emperor had become the ruler of Japan. The fact that the Tokugawa's policy of opening up Japan to the western world ran counter to faith of the Emperor and has been unpopular with the public made the Tokugawa vulnerable to assault from the imperialists. The imperialists pressed their attack both militarily and from inside the Court of Kyoto. The Japanese public and the Shogun's supporters shortly felt that they'd dropped the Imperial Will. The conclusion of the Tokugawa program indicates the ability of the symbolism and myths surrounding the imperial institution. The mind of the Tokugawa clan perished in 1867 and was replaced with the son of a god that had been a winner of Japanese historical studies and who agreed with the imperialists' claims concerning restoring the Emperor. In 1867, the new shogun handed over all his ability to Emperor Komeo in Kyoto. Soon after handing over power to Emperor Komeo, the Emperor died and was replaced by his own son that became the Meiji Emperor, which formally started the Meiji period (1868-1911). The Meiji Emperor was only 15, and therefore all of the energy of this brand new restored Emperor fell not at the Emperor's hands but at the hands of his close advisors. Once in control of the authorities, the Meiji leaders and advisers to the Emperor reversed their policy of hostility to Foreigners. The main reason for doing this is because following Emperor Komeo, who ardently opposed contact with the west, died in 1867 that the Meiji Emperor's advisers were no longer bound by his Imperial...

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