Episode 120 – The Fall of the Samurai, Part 4

This week, we’ll explore Japanese reactions to Perry and his successor, the new US Consul in Japan Townsend Harris. As the foreign powers begin to muscle their way more and more into Japan, battle lines between two opposing camps with different visions of Japan’s future will be drawn. Things haven’t come apart yet, but we’re now officially on the road to Tokugawa collapse.

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

W.G. Beasley, The Meiji Restoration

Albert Craig, Choshu and the Meiji Restoration

Marius Jansen, The Making of Modern Japan

Images

Shimoda in 1856.
Shimoda in 1856.
Townsend Harris, the American businessman who became the first resident US Consul General in Shimoda and who negotiated the Harris Treaty in 1858.
Townsend Harris, the American businessman who became the first resident US Consul General in Shimoda and who negotiated the Harris Treaty in 1858.
Hotta Masayoshi took over as leader of the roju after Abe Masayoshi was forced to resign in disgrace. He continued Abe's policies, but like Abe lacked a certain forcefulness which held him back politically.
Hotta Masayoshi took over as leader of the roju after Abe Masayoshi was forced to resign in disgrace. He continued Abe’s policies, but like Abe lacked a certain forcefulness which held him back politically.
Tokugawa Nariaki, a shimpan daimyo and distant relative of the Tokugawa main line, came to lead the anti-Treaty faction. He was lord of Mito, the domain which was home to the conservative, emperor-centered school of history and philosophy known as Mitogaku (Mito learning).
Tokugawa Nariaki, a shimpan daimyo and distant relative of the Tokugawa main line, came to lead the anti-Treaty faction. He was lord of Mito, the domain which was home to the conservative, emperor-centered school of history and philosophy known as Mitogaku (Mito learning).
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