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Japan Documents Handbook titles

This series focuses on the broad field of Japanese Studies, aimed at the worldwide English language scholarly market, published in Tokyo in English. Each Handbook will contain an average of 20 newly written contributions on various aspects of the topic, which together comprise an up-to-date survey of use to scholars and students. The focus is on Humanities and Social Sciences.

The Annotated Constitution of Japan: A Handbook (Edited by Colin P.A. Jones)

Jap Constituion Cover.png


June, 2023, 438p. Hardback

ISBN: 978-4-909286-18-5

¥28,875 (tax included)

The Annotated Constitution of Japan: A Handbook for the first time makes the entirety of Japan’s constitution accessible in English. The book consists of a historical and contextual overview of how the constitution came into being, followed by descriptions of each of its 103 articles; the meaning of the text, interpretive disputes, academic theories and leading cases arising under them. The book also points out the many subtle distinctions between the English version and the Japanese, some of which arose from the charter’s unique provenance. With contributors representing a broad range of expertise in various areas of Japanese law, the book is written to appeal to academics, students and general readers alike.  It is intended to be the first port of call for anyone needing to understand the fundamentals of Japanese constitutional law, whether from the perspective of Japanese studies, comparative law, or political science, but unable to access the text and related literature available in Japanese.  Key reference documents in English and Japanese are included as appendices for ease of reference.


Colin P.A. Jones

Colin P.A. Jones is a professor at Doshisha University Law School in Kyoto. A graduate of U.C. Berkeley, he did graduate work at Tohoku University (LL.M.) and Duke Law School (J.D., LL.M.). He is also a practicing lawyer admitted in New York and the Republic of Palau (inactive status) and sits on corporate boards. Colin has published widely in both Japanese and English, with a particular focus on Japanese law. His books include The Japanese Legal System and The Japanese Legal System in a Nutshell (both from West Academic and co-authored with Frank Ravitch) and Obey, Not Know: Essays in Japanese Law and Society (Kurodahan Press), which is based on his long-running column “Law of the Land” in The Japan Times. He also offers commentary on law in Japan on Twitter.


Giorgio Fabio Colombo, Nagoya University Graduate School of Law and “Ca’ Foscari” University of Venice, Italy; Tōru Enoki, Senshu University; Koji Higashikawa, Kanazawa University; Mari Hirayama, Hakuoh University in Tochigi, Japan; Mark Levin, Pacific and Asian Legal Studies Program at the William S. Richardson School of Law, and Director of the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Center for Japanese Studies; Shigenori Matsui, University of British Columbia, Peter A. Allard School of Law; Tetsuji Matsumoto, Doshisha University Law School; Sean McGinty, Nagoya University Graduate School of Law; Andrea Ortolani, University of Tsukuba; Kayoko Oshima, Graduate School of Policy and Management at Doshisha University; Frank S. Ravitch, Michigan State University College of Law; Yuichiro Tsuji, Meiji University Graduate School of Law.

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