A History of Ethnic Transition and Development on Japan’s Northern Island


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About the Book

Japanese people have lived on the country’s other three main islands—Honshu, Kyushu, and Shikoku—for many centuries, but ethnic Japanese, or Wajin, began coming to Hokkaido in large numbers only in the latter half of the nineteenth century. This book tells the story of Japan’s aboriginal people, the Ainu, followed by that of foreign explorers and ethnic Japanese pioneers. The book pays close attention to the Japanese-Russian conflicts over the island, including Cold War confrontations and more recent clashes over fishing rights and the Hokkaido-administered islands seized by the U.S.S.R. in 1945.

About the Author(s)

A retired teacher, Ann B. Irish has taught in Japan, Laos, and the United States. She lives on Vashon Island in Washington State.

Bibliographic Details

Ann B. Irish
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 378
Bibliographic Info: 82 photos, maps, glossary, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2009
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4449-6
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5465-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

Part I. Becoming Hokkaido
1. The Place      7
2. The Ainu      23
3. The Matsumae Era      41
4. The Explorers      56
5. Hakodate      84

Part II. Development
6. The Pioneers      115
7. The Foreign Experts      143
8. Sapporo      160
9. Development and the Ainu      191
10. The Early Twentieth Century      216
11. War and Occupation      245
12. Hokkaido and Her Northern Neighbor      264
13. Recovery and Development      290
14. Hokkaido in the World Economy      307

Conclusion      327
Appendix 1. Hokkaido Chronology      333
Appendix 2. Key Figures in Hokkaido History      337
Appendix 3. Glossary      341
Chapter Notes      343
Bibliography      352
Index      361

Book Reviews & Awards

“the writer’s style is pleasant and easy to read…a wholly satisfactory compilation…warmly recommended”—The Journal of Polar Record.