The Decline Of The Meiji Era Essay

1522 Words Nov 3rd, 2016 7 Pages
The turnover from the Tokugawa period to the Meiji is historically seen as a Japan entering a new age of modernization and industrialization to reach western levels of civilization.
Tokugawa as a traditional, old fashioned age while Meiji metaphorically as opening itself up to new ideas and western ways of thinking. The Meiji era was a time where Japan opened itself up to western influence. This romanticized way of viewing Meiji as a triumphant time of growing industry and capitalism is, however, largely leaving out the accounts of the rural peasants whose lives were not simply transformed overnight by these new changes. Most people living in the countryside were still relatively poor, barely getting buy with the little money that they manage to earn. Traditional gender roles for women were also still in effect during Meiji, though not unlike the rest of the western world by the late 19th century to early 20th. However, women were generally seen as valuable assets regardless of how they may have been treated by their husbands, family, and their work authorities. Rural women in the Meiji era of Japan had social expectations and obligations that the overarching patriarchal system set in place for them based on a growing sense of national pride and a need for labor in factories to back the growth of capitalism. Under the still ever present patriarchal system of Meiji Japan, women were seen as inferior to their male counterparts. Under law, wives were treated like minors,…

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