Following the Meiji Restoration of 1868, Japan adopted many Western practices and institutions, including a constitution in 1889. "The Establishment of the Japanese Constitutional System" discusses how the Constitution actually worked during its first decade.
After the Diet--or parliament--was established, the oligarchs who had framed the Constitution found that the Diet intervened more than they had intended. In an equally surprising turn, the popular political parties who had initially opposed the expensive nationalist and industrial expansionist plans of the government eventually became supporters. The reasons for this drastic change in basic attitudes present a fascinating series of questions which Junji Banno addresses in this book.
To answer these questions, the author analyzes the constitutional framework and the economic interests of the key supporters of the popular parties--the agricultural landowners. The changing interests of this group in the mid 1890s forced the popular party leaders to modify their demand for "cheap government." Variations in the prices of agricultural products greatly influenced the attitudes of landowners towards government financial policies, shifting their focus away from tax reduction and towards industrialization as an attractive policy.
"This is a useful book for the serious student of Japanese political history."
-Sir Hugh Cortazzi, "Proceedings of the Japan Society
"This is an important work of scholarship translated into English with great skill . . . can be read with profit by all political historians interested in the creation of constitutional systems."
Series: Nissan Institute Routledge Japanese Studies Series
Tertiary; University or College
Number Of Pages: 268
Published: 30th April 1992
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 14.61
Weight (kg): 0.49
Edition Number: 1