Race and racism

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter argues that race and racism have been powerful factors in the history of modern Japan. Although Japan entered the modern era without a well-defined racist framework, in the late nineteenth century it was exposed to Western racism and soon began to adopt certain aspects of it. As a concept, race held powerful appeal in Japan because it was associated with the West, modernization, and the quest for great-nation status. The concept was ambiguous, though, because it stimulated both civilizational and imperial expansion. Following World War II, the issue of race lost much of its importance, but its reverberations remain today, in particular regarding minority ethnic groups and immigrants.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Modern Japanese History
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781317599043
ISBN (Print)9781138815186
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 selection and editorial matter, Sven Saaler and Christopher W. A. Szpilman.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Arts and Humanities


Dive into the research topics of 'Race and racism'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this