Japanese History: The Tokugawa Period

1. The Tokugawa period is that from 1600-1868 while the Meiji period is from 1868-1912. During the Tokugawa period, there were various levels of class including Samurai, Farmer, Artisans, Merchants, and outcasts (aka hinin or burakumin). The Samurai and burakumin were especially important matters during that time as Samurai’s served as retainers for Daimyos and other government bodies within the domains of Japan. The Tokugawa period was a time of harsh punishment and fear. Much of the Tokugawa’s judicial and punishment implementations was to be as ruthless as possible. This notion is due to the governments want to control crime and burakumin through fear and example. To do such a thing they used various methods of torture and execution through …show more content…
Throughout Japanese history, the police’s treatment towards that of Yakuza changed variously depending on the era. In Confessions of a Yakuza by Junichi Saga, you are treated to the story of a former yakuza boss and his life in the early 1900’s. Due to the nature of being a Yakuza, there was much interaction between them and the police. The police at this time had a real disliking towards the Yakuza as the corrupt cops would keep them on short leashes in exchange for looking way. Though if the Yakuza ever stepped out of line they would make sure that gang would cease to exist. The police would do this by setting up 24-hour surveillance and making the customers too scared to come, that way the place would slowly die. Due to this, no matter how cruel and arrogant the police were, the Yakuza had no choice but to head to almost their every word. “Even if they half killed you-you never let on about it at the trial. And the cops, on their side, new they were safe…” (Saga 92). Such comprise occurred when they were raided once and Eiji blew out the lights. The police felt insulted they were unable to catch anyone and demanded that the one who blew out the lights turned himself in. The Yakuza had no choice but to follow their demands. Even so, Eiji was beaten in questioning despite turning in himself …show more content…
In Confessions of a Yakuza by Junichi Saga, there are many examples of violent activities. Especially between that of the Yakuza and the police. Such an example can be seen when Eiji turns himself in for the blackout during the police raid. Even though he turned himself in, the police did not believe that it was him running the place and wanted to beat a confession out of him. “He was an old hand at interrogations, and he knew where it hurt. Really good at it, he was. He never hit your head or chest. No-he aimed for the soft places around your buttocks and thighs. It hurt, but it didn’t break any bones, so he could lay into you as much as he liked” (Saga 90). The police had not trouble and even enjoyed giving beatings to various criminals, especially the Yakuza at the time. This beating also shows how they would thrash people to get a confession out of them, even if they were actually innocent. This corruption led Japan to have high arrest and confession rate, though the actual criminals may still be at

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