Japan is the second oldest country in the world, officially founded in 660 BCE by Emperor Jimmu. Since then, Japan has gone through considerable changes, and wasn’t fully unified as a country until the 1600s during the Edo Period under Oda Nobunaga, and his retainers Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and Tokugawa Ieyasu.
Many people question whether or not the Yakuza are active and alive. So, do these fictional gangsters still have counterparts in real life? Yes, they do. Although they have fewer members each year, there are still active Yakuza organizations throughout Japan.
Puroresu is Japan’s pro-wrestling scene, having been around since the late 1800s and becoming mainstream by the 1960s with the rise of Rikidozan. Since then, Puroresu has gone through dramatic changes with a history as colorful and full of drama as some of the bouts.
Known as the Haitorei Edict, during the Meiji Period and Restoration (1868-1912), the social class known as samurai was abolished, banning non-government officials from carrying swords. A Sword Hunt followed leading to the confiscation of all weapons and swords in Japan by the government.
Katsushika Hokusai is an 18th-19th century Japanese artist, ukiyo-e painter, and woodblock carver, prominently known for his most famous piece of art, The Great Wave Off Kanagawa. Hokusai is credited for shaking up the genre of ukiyo by painting and carving non-traditional subjects and everyday life.
Christianity was first brought to Japan by Francis Xavier and his Jesuit Missionary in 1549. Since then, Christianity has always been present within Japan even during persecutions under the Tokugawa Shogunate. However, because of such persecutions, only one percent of Japan’s population identifies as being Christian.
The warfare which characterized medieval Japan from the Heian period (794–1185) up until the Edo period (1600 – 1868) gave rise to a wide array of gear used to kill, maim, or otherwise inconvenience the foot soldiers and samurai of enemy clans.
The image was created by Hokusai, Japan’s most internationally renowned artist, as part of his 36 Views of Mt Fuji series which ran from 1830 to 1832. This isn’t his only painting of a wave, but it’s far and away his best — with a sense of animation and drama that has captured imaginations for almost two centuries since.
That’s a big question, and one which is jumbled up with centuries of mystification and misinformation. This can be attributed to the inherently shadowy nature of their work, which left plenty of gaps in history, in which the imaginations of later generations ran wild.
The roots of the answer stretch back all the way through Japanese history, from its mythical beginnings right through to the hyper-nationalism of the modern era. The idea of divine nobility is longstanding in Japan, used to legitimize and naturalize the political order for centuries, not unlike the holy mandate claimed by European kings and queens.