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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.

Handbook of Environmental History in Japan (Edited by Fujihara Tatsuya)



April 1, 2023, 279p. Hardback

ISBN: 978-4-909286-14-7

¥28,875 (tax included)

Japan: a land plagued by volcanoes, earthquakes and typhoons, yet blessed with a climate suitable for all manner of agriculture and forestry, and positioned where ocean currents collide and bring an abundance of the ocean’s resources to its people; a country which moved quickly from an agrarian pre-industrial society to become one of the world’s great economic powerhouses in only a few decades, spoiling water, air and land in the process, bringing misery to many of its people; a country with expansionist desires, colonizing neighboring lands, leading to war, defeat, destruction and, for the first time in history, nuclear devastation and its aftermath; a land and its people which share a remarkable resilience and ability to evaluate and correct their mistakes and renew their trajectory towards a better future.  


The sixteen chapters of this book take a critical look at the environmental history of Japan, reviewing lessons learned and offering ideas that may provide solutions to at least some of the existential environmental problems faced by people all around the globe.  


Divided into five sections which examine topology, pollution, the relationship shared by humans and nature, water resources and forestry, this handbook is a valuable resource for students and scholars who want to discover and understand the role humans play not just in the destruction of resources but also in their preservation.


Fujihara Tatsushi

Fujihara Tatsushi is Associate Professor at the Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University. His main research field is the modern history of food and agriculture in Germany and Japan. His published works in Japanese include History of the Kitchen in Modern Germany (2012), Rice Breeding in the Japanese Empire (2012), and Philosophy of Decomposition (2019). His works in English include “Erbhofgesetz in Manchukuo: A case study of the acceptance of Nazi agricultural ideology by the Japanese Empire,” in L. Fernández Prieto, J. Pan-Montojo , and M. Cabo (eds.), Agriculture in the Age of Fascism (Brepols, 2014) and “Colonial Seeds, Imperialist Genes: Hōrai Rice and Agricultural Development,” in Hiromi Mizuno, Aaron S. Moore, and John DiMoiaw (eds.), Engineering Asia: Technology, Colonial Development and the Cold War Order (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018).


Aoki Soko, Associate Professor of Environmental Sociology, Graduate School Faculty of Arts and Letters, Tohoku University; Fujihara Tatsushi, Associate Professor at the Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University; Hashimoto Michinori, Museum Curator, Shiga Prefectural Lake Biwa Museum; John Hayashi, PhD Candidate in History at Harvard University; Kobori Satoru, Associate Professor at the Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University; Komeie Taisaku, Professor in Geography, Department of Geography, Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University; Kozai Toyoko, Professor of Sociology at Bukkyo University in Kyoto; Yuka Tsuchiya Moriguchi, Professor in American History, Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University; Nakao Maika, Associate Professor in the History of Science at Hiroshima University; Nakashima Koji, Professor at the Faculty of Human Sciences, Institute of Human and Social Sciences, Kanazawa University;  Nishimura Takahiro, LLD, Professor of legal history at the Law Faculty, Meijo University; Cyrian Pitteloud is a graduate of the University of Geneva, where he completed his doctorate in Japanese studies; Seki Reiko, Professor in the Department of Contemporary Culture and Society, College of Sociology, Rikkyo University; Takemoto Taro, Senior Assistant Professor at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology; Uesugi Kazuhiro, PhD, Associate Professor of historical geography at the Department of History, Faculty of Letters, Kyoto Prefectural University; Yuzawa NorikoProfessor at the Faculty of Sustainability Studies at Hosei University.

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