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By 1816, Japan had recovered from famines and political reforms and seemed to be approaching a new period of growth. No one questioned the shogunate, yet, in this same year, an anonymous author wrote one of the most detailed critiques of Edo society Japan had ever seen. Writing as Buyo Inshi, "a retired gentleman of Edo," this experienced observer exposed the corruption of samurai officials, the suffering of the poor, the operation of brothels, the dealings of moneylenders, the selling of temples, and many other offenses. Specialists on Edo society oversee this annotated translation
The essays in this groundbreaking book explore the meanings of manhood in Japan from the seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries. Recreating Japanese Men examines a broad range of attitudes regarding properly masculine pursuits and modes of behavior. It charts breakdowns in traditional and conventional societal roles and the resulting crises of masculinity. Contributors address key questions about Japanese manhood ranging from icons such as the samurai to marginal men including hermaphrodites, robots, techno-geeks, rock climbers, shop clerks, soldiers, shoguns, and more. In addition to bringing historical evidence to bear on definitions of masculinity, contributors provide fresh analyses on the ways contemporary modes and styles of masculinity have affected Japanese men's sense of gender as authentic and stable.
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