Cover image for Japan meets the world : the birth of a super power
Japan meets the world : the birth of a super power
Roberson, John R.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Brookfield, Conn. : Millbrook Press, [1998]

Physical Description:
208 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Examines the history of Japan through various stages of progress and isolationism, including its rise to world power, up to the present day and the current Asian economic crisis.
General Note:
Rev. and enl. ed. of: Japan from Shogun to Sony, 1543-1984. 1985.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 9.3 9.0 28998.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DS871 .R636 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Starting in the days of the Shoguns in the sixteenth century and their first forays into trade with western countries, Japan's unique and rich culture was revealed to the world. Through various stages of progress and isolationism, author John Roberson explores Japan's history up to the present day. This book, originally published in 1985 with the title JAPAN: From Shogun to Sony, was very well-received and tells the story of Japan's rise to world power in a clear narrative voice that makes for fascinating reading and paints a vivid picture of Japanese life and culture. This edition has been updated through the 1998 Winter Olympic games in Nagano, and the current Asian economic crisis.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 7^-12. In 1543, "a number of strange-looking men from a distant country" sailed to a small Japanese island and ingratiated themselves with the power brokers there. They did much more, too. The sailors, Portuguese traders, fascinated the Japanese with their muskets, and facilitated a new, profitable trading relationship between Japan and China. Christian missionaries to Japan followed, exposing Japan to more influences from the outside world. Yet by no means is this book about Japan's being "opened" by the West. On the contrary, Roberson provides a rich, detailed look at Japanese culture and political life in the 400-plus years since the mid-1500s, as well as the nation's interactions with the rest of the world. Originally published in 1985 as Japan from Shogun to Sony, this edition, which includes fewer illustrations than the earlier book, updates the previous title by bringing readers to the Nagano Olympic Games and emphasizing social stresses in the Japanese way of life--especially, new financial realities as other Asian countries, "the Little Tigers," fight their way into the global market. This is an accessible, must-have resource for students needing detailed information about the history and current status of Japan. Glossary; bibliography; well-chosen but average-quality black-and white-photos. --Anne O'Malley

School Library Journal Review

Gr 7 Up‘As in the earlier edition of this book, entitled Japan from Shogun to Sony 1543-1984 (Atheneum, 1985; o.p.), Roberson begins with the arrival of the first foreign ship to Japan, bearing traders from Portugal. He follows with an account of Japanese relations with Portuguese missionaries, and later Franciscan missionaries from Spain. Religious battles led to the end of open Christian worship in Japan, and the policy of exclusion, which lasted more than 200 years. The unique political system from the samurai, shogun, and emperor is discussed in detail. Commodore Perry's arrival from America, which reopened Japan to foreigners, is fully documented. The author covers Japan's involvement in the World Wars, its stormy relations with China, and its occupation after World War II. Roberson traces the boost in the Japanese economy and the nation's eventual domination in world markets in electronics and other areas. Mention is made of the death of Emperor Hirohito in 1989, the Kobe earthquake of 1995, the nerve-gas subway bombing in 1995, and the 1998 Olympic games in Nagano. Other additions include recent contributions to world culture, e.g., the first Japanese baseball player to play in American major leagues. Black-and-white photographs and historical reproductions are scattered throughout, and an extensive bibliography is included. The writing is clear and involving. A good update to the original, and a broad historical overview.‘DeAnn Tabuchi, San Anselmo Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.