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The Periperal Centre
Essays on Japanese History and Civilization
by Johann Arnason
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Arnason deals with the complex relationship between patterns of Japanese modernity and the civilizational legacy on which they draw. He discusses the East Asian regional context of Japanese civilization, deals with the dynamics of state formation and the attendant cultural transformations in premodern Japan, and suggests ways of comparing the Japanese experience to that of the west. Presenting Japan as a test case for relating the emerging problematic of multiple modernities to civilizational perspectives, Arnason examines the economic foundations as well as philosophical self-interpretations of Japanese modernity.

Contents
Preface, Acknowledgements
The peripheral centre and its transformations
East Asian approaches: Region, history and civilization
Comparing Japan: The return to Asia
Is Japan a civilization sui generis?
State formation in Japan and the West
Elias in Japan: State formation, military elites and organized violence
Multiple modernities and civilizational contexts: Reflections on the Japanese experience
Miracles and mirages: Comparative perspectives on Japanese capirtalism

Published by Trans Pacific Press
Published 2002, 234 pp.
ISBN 1 876843 95 0, hardback, 48.00
ISBN 1 876843 07 1, paperback, 19.99