How Does Globalization Affect Japan

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On March 31st, 1854, officials from the United States and Japan signed the Treaty of Kanagawa, opening Japanese ports to trade with the United States, as well as the West, after being closed off to foreigners since 1683 (“Treaty of Kanagawa signed with Japan”). While this was just the first step of the globalization process, the complex mechanisms of globalization continue to shape Japan today. After World War II, due to Japan’s rapid growth, the country emerged as a major global player and established great economic power. Globalization has contributed to Japan’s continued success and power through economic, political, and cultural means. There are many facets of Japan’s economy that can be examined in the context of globalization. Japan operates on a free market economy, very similar to that of the United States. Japan’s currency, the Yen, was introduced to the country in 1870 and was modelled to resemble a currency system similar to those of European countries. While the value of the Yen was eventually pegged to the US dollar, the fixed exchange rate became too difficult to maintain in a competitive market setting and was allowed to float against other country’s currencies beginning in 1973 (“Historical Exchange Rate Regime of Asian Countries”). The …show more content…
One of the most blatant changes to Japan’s culture comes from changes to Japanese linguistics. These changes tend to shift traditional Japanese language to a more Westernized, English type. Japanese communication strategies have shifted in the same manner and words such as “direct,” “competitive,” and “egalitarian” are now used more than ever in the Japanese language, which has, in the past, been more passive. In decision making, a more dominant approach is becoming more common in conversations. Now, speakers are more likely to “demand” agreement by saying ‘I assume you agree,’ rather than “seek” agreement by asking for it (Ota,

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