Background: In 1603, a Tokugawa shogunate (military dictatorship) ushered in a long period of isolation from foreign influence in order to secure its power. For 250 years this policy enabled Japan to enjoy stability and a flowering of its indigenous culture. Following the Treaty of Kanagawa with the United States in 1854, Japan opened its ports and began to intensively modernize and industrialize. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Japan became a regional power that was able to defeat the forces of both China and Russia. It occupied Korea, Formosa (Taiwan), and southern Sakhalin Island. In 1933 Japan occupied Manchuria and in 1937 it launched a full-scale invasion of China. Japan attacked US forces in 1941 - triggering America's entry into World War II - and soon occupied much of East and Southeast Asia. After its defeat in World War II, Japan recovered to become an economic power and a staunch ally of the US. While the emperor retains his throne as a symbol of national unity, actual power rests in networks of powerful politicians, bureaucrats, and business executives. The economy experienced a major slowdown starting in the 1990s following three decades of unprecedented growth, but Japan still remains a major economic power, both in Asia and globally. In 2005, Japan began a two-year term as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.
Blogs from Tottori
Latest Blogs from Tottori
- August 15th 2011 Historic Downtown Kurayoshi
by Words: 63 Photos: 6
- July 14th 2011 July 4th and a pro chef.
by Words: 194 Photos: 9
- April 30th 2011 Pear Tree Flowers
by Words: 113 Photos: 8
- June 14th 2009 Busy bee
by Words: 785 Photos: 22
- October 27th 2008 A Rewarding Day
by Words: 172 Photos: 6
- October 16th 2008 Ett besök i Tottori
by Words: 910 Photos: 48
- October 9th 2008 Shirakawa-Village, The World Heritaqe Shirakawa-qo
by Words: 532 Photos: 0
- July 23rd 2008 Woken by waves
by Words: 617 Photos: 51
- July 10th 2008 A farewell to friends
by Words: 590 Photos: 6
- July 6th 2008 Teaching and turning Japanese in Tottori...
by Words: 537 Photos: 11
- June 21st 2008 Parents visit Tottori!
by Words: 917 Photos: 25
- June 10th 2008 Out for a stroll with Mr. Daisen
by Words: 1468 Photos: 7
- May 14th 2008 MooshiMooshi Part 11
by Words: 2305 Photos: 10
- March 14th 2008 Hisashiburi Minnasan!
by Words: 553 Photos: 6
- January 19th 2008 Eating Crabs
by Words: 1 Photos: 9
- December 15th 2007 New Purikura!
by Words: 14 Photos: 6
- November 22nd 2007 Cultural Festival!
by Words: 959 Photos: 13
- November 14th 2007 Smelly butt...stink bugs...and inappropriate comics
by Words: 616 Photos: 0
- November 6th 2007 A quick run down of recent events
by Words: 765 Photos: 6
- September 30th 2007 59th Annual English Speech Contest!
by Words: 626 Photos: 1