Questions tagged [japan]

An island country in the western Pacific, located east of the Asian mainland.

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2answers
119 views

How did Soviet soldiers resist tanks during the battle of Shumshu?

During the battle of Shumshu, it is claimed in the Wikipedia article that forces ratio was as follow: Japan side: 8 500 personnel (combatant and non combatant?) and 77 tanks Russian side: up to 9 000 ...
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Why did animation become so huge in Japan compared to other countries?

I'd like a general explanation of the historical/cultural reasons that have made anime in Japan so big. There's clearly disproportion between the Japanese population (I doubt that at any moment since ...
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Why do the Japanese sing Ode to Joy during the Japanese New Year?

During the New Years days, the Japanese have a curious custom where they perform Beethoven's 9th symphony. This has produced some stunning sights on youtube But there's nothing particularly festive ...
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How did Japan build an extensive rail network in Greater Tokyo?

Their rail network is like a spider web and also wondering how most of the lines are at-grade or eleveted excluding Tokyo Metro/Toei Subway lines, even though the suburbs are very dense with buldings. ...
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Why couldn't the Ottoman Empire modernise at the same time as Meiji Japan did? [closed]

It appears to me that Japan modernised during the late 19th century to come to a level of advancement comparable to Western powers was, unlike Ottoman Empire Japan had universal compulsory education ...
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Why the Ottoman Empire failed to match Europe whereas Japan managed to? [duplicate]

It seems as if the overall result of the numerous 'reforms' instituted to 'develop and revive' the heavily declining Ottoman Empire eventually was nothing more than to imitate European lifestyle in ...
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3answers
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Are there incidents of ronin travelling outside Japan as soldiers of fortune?

There are time periods where large numbers of ronin flocked to Edo, and roamed the Japanese countryside looking for some source of income; generally during and right after the Senegoku period and ...
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1answer
876 views

How did East Asia circa 1500 produce cosmetics?

For a work of fiction, I need to know how one would produce cosmetics from the available products at those times (circa 1500). I imagine I would need - beeswax, which was probably widely available - ...
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4answers
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Why would anyone from Japan be in Northern India in early 1900s?

I am trying to write a fictional history novel. Can someone tell me why a young man from a wealthy, samurai family from Japan would be in Northern India in the early 1900s (after WW1, before WWII). ...
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3answers
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What does the eighth samurai crest / symbol in this picture signify?

I would like to ask you all to explain the meaning of the 8-th symbol in this picture*: I would like to also know what are those symbols? Thank you very much. * Source: http://www.samurai-store.com/...
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Before ww2, why did Japan allow Chinese students to study military science?

In 1917, Cheng Fangwu and his friends were openly anti-Japan; yet in Japan they were free to elect whatever major they liked. Cheng studied steel making, guns, ballistics and torpedoes but later ...
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1answer
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What evidence is there of tank-vs-tank combat in Asia during the second world war?

It has been known that the Japanese army during the Second World War did not value tanks highly and as such they were not always used effectively and had significantly worse characteristics than ...
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How did British aircraft fare against Japanese aircraft during the Second World War? [closed]

It goes without saying that both the Supermarine Spitfire used by the UK and the Japanese Mitsubishi Zero are iconic fighter aircraft of the Second World War. But how did these aircraft fare when they ...
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Was the last Japanese surrender after WWII in the 1970s?

Wikipedia in its article on the Surrender of Japan, claims: Some Japanese holdouts, especially on small Pacific Islands, refused to surrender at all (believing the declaration to be propaganda or ...
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If the Allies had invaded Japan in 1945, would they have been fighting the “weakest” Japanese troops?

Sources such as Basil Collier's "The Second World War: A Military History" list the Japanese forces during the war as being 6 million. My understanding is that the background of these troops is ...
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How long did it take for Japanese high command to believe 1 bomb could destroy a city? [closed]

In 1776, had a man walked into the Continental Congress and told the Founding Fathers that the city of Boston seemed to be "gone". A few days prior, as he approached Boston, in the distance he'd seen ...
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At what age did samurai children start going into battles in the Sengoku era?

Exactly as the title says, from what age did a child of a samurai start to join his father in battles? I suspect it is when the child was considered an adult, but what age was considered an adult ...
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When did Russia learn about the Philippines and the Japanese and Spanish presences there?

The Japanese and Spanish did business in the Philippines from the 12th and 16th centuries respectively. In Russia, Vasili III became aware that the Spanish had reached America after his envoys ...
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When did Emperor Hirohito gave an address about suicides and non-productive jobs?

I heard in a conversation I got with a friend of a friend before, that during World War II apparently Emperor Hirohito of Japan, gave an address to his people after a long time in which talked about ...
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What was the nature of the Japanese presence in China in the later stages of World War II?

I am trying to understand Japanese punitive expeditions in China such as the Three Alls Campaign and retaliation for the Doolittle Raid on Tokyo. In each case, the Japanese largely retaliated against ...
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Why didn't the Japanese develop air defenses after the bombing of Tokyo?

So, I was reading some WWII questions, and a couple of them mentioned the bombing of Tokyo. I had never heard of it before, so I decided to read up on it. What I don't understand about it is Japan's ...
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1answer
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Were the Japanese aware of Desmond Doss's actions?

I read about the amazing story of Desmond Doss and wonder if the Japanese at all aware, during the Battle of Okinawa of the extent of his actions at the time? I know a few individual Japanese would ...
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When and why was the samurai class abolished?

I am aware the Emperor Meiji abolished the Samurai class during the reformation. Why did he do so? How was it enforced?
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Was Heisuke Yanagawa really censored out in photos, and why?

Heisuke Yanagawa (柳川 平助) was an IJA Lieutenant General who commanded one of the main armies in the Battle of Nanking. He would have been one of the generals photographed marching into Nanking. I've ...
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Why did Japan fail to interfere with shipping from America to Vladivostok from 1941-1945?

Throughout World War II, the United States was able to supply Russia with food and many crucial war materials, such as aluminum, via Russia's Pacific port, Vladivostok. Japan steadfastedly refused to ...
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Why did Japan never “apologize” enough for World War 2?

Although Japan kept "apologizing" for atrocities committed during World War 2 for more than 70 years, the apologies were deemed "not sincere enough" by the victims. This stands in huge contrast with ...
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How would one refer to/address a Shogun?

In the Bakumatsu era, how would one refer to a shogun (when talking about him with someone else) or address him directly if talking to him? Is it just name + -sama suffix? I am interest in the answer ...
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Were the Nazis actually ever horrified of anything that the Imperial Japanese Army did or vice-versa?

While reading Rationalwiki page on the Rape of Nanjing part of the article really stood out to me: …such as hanging people by their tongues on iron hooks or burying people to their waists and ...
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Was Japan known to be a potential threat to the USA in the 10 year period prior to 1941

In the years leading up to the Pearl Harbor attack, did non-military Americans see Japan as a potential threat to the USA?
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Why was the Japanese Army's fatalities inflicted:suffered ratio so low in the Pacific theatre?

Leaving aside the naval battles of the Pacific, why did the Japanese army do so poorly against allied forces (specifically United states and Australian forces) when on the defensive. While logistics ...
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How did Japan successfully conquer Vietnam (Southeast Asia) in WW2?

I've read the obvious wiki article (which is rather small), but did not really find an answer. At the end of the article, it says: To prepare for an invasion of the Dutch East Indies, some 140,000 ...
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Why did Meiji government consider switching from Japanese to English?

During the Meiji restoration, the Meiji govenment sought to switch Japan's national language from Japanese to English. Who and why advocated that? Ultimately, why was it unsuccessful? Source: ...
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When did Easter Island start to become such a frequent participant in Japanese Comics?

I recently came across a lot of questions on Anime and Manga Stack Exchange by this user who is the curator of an exhibition on Easter Island in popular culture (http://www.moaiculture.com) I ...
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Why does Japan use the same type of AC power outlet as the US?

Does it have something to do with the US taking part in aiding reconstruction of the country after WWII? I've tried googling around for an answer, but every site I find simply states the outlet style, ...
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Did Japan ever attack Vladivostok in WW2? Why or why not?

That's a screenshot from Battlefield Season 4 Episode 3. I added the location of Vladivostok. In all my readings, I have never found a Japanese attack on Vladivostok during or right before WW2. You ...
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1answer
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Did Anza find evidence of a Japanese wreck?

Through the age of sail Japanese sea drifters involuntarily crossed the Pacific. The sengokubune ship which tended to lose its rudder in storms and drift nearly endlessly. Several made it to North ...
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1answer
391 views

Did Japanese castaways land in Spanish California?

George Lensen's "The Russian Push Toward Japan" says on p. 261: In 1815 the transport Pavel under the command of Navigator's Apprentice Srednii left Okhotsk with six Japanese castaways, three of ...
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1answer
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What effects did World War II have on Japanese animation industry?

I was recently looking up the effects of the world war on Japanese Animation Industry after I made the following observations It is quite common to see German names in Japanese Anime which could be ...
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2answers
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Did Midway provide the strategic opportunity Japan sought? [closed]

We all know that the Battle of Midway was a disaster for the Japanese Empire, and a turning point of the Pacific War. Events did not turn out as the IJN had hoped. But the result by no means was a ...
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Did a sumo referee ever actually commit ritual suicide over a reversed decision?

The sport of Sumo wrestling has picked up quite a few traditions during its long history. One of these traditions is that the tate-gyoji, the two most senior referees, wear a knife. This knife ...
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2answers
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Was Nobunaga the founder of 3 lines of riflemen formation?

During Battle of Nagashino, Oda Nobunaga ordered his riflemen to make three lines and shoot in a certain order, that is the first line will shoot, followed by the second line. While the second line ...
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Who started the “katana is the soul of the Samurai” meme?

Samurai used to be defined by their ability to use horses and bows in the early history of Japan. This moved to using the sword, first tachi then katana. Within the Tokugawa period, the katana ...
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What were Chiang Kai-shek's biggest strategic blunders during the Second Sino-Japanese war?

Just as it is often said that Operation Barbarossa is Hitler's biggest strategic blunder (either the whole thing, its timing or execution), what were Chiang Kai-shek's biggest strategic blunders in ...
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Where do the ethics of shounen anime come from?

shonen, or shounen (少年) anime (shows like Naruto, Dragon Ball, My Hero Academia, etc.) all (for the most part) realize a certain set of values, which are usually central to their plots and which the ...
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1answer
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Why do schools in Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea use the Westminster Quarters as school chime?

Today, I read about the Westminister Quarters, the chime used by Big Ben in Westminster, London. In that article, I see this assertion: Most schools in Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea play the ...
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What are the circumstances that lead to Kondou being the sole Shinsengumi leader?

After the assassination of Serizawa Kamo, this left Kondou and Tonouchi as the remaining faction leaders. From what I understand, Tonouchi knew or even helped Kondou get rid of Serizawa but, then, ...
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Why, in the US, is Japanese brutality ignored compared with the Nazi brutality in WW2?

Instead of accepting too much of what I have read in my textbooks, I have read up a bit about WW2 on my own and have always pondered, why in the USA is the brutality and actions of the Japanese during ...
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1answer
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How could it be that 80% of townspeople were farmers during the Edo period in Japan?

I've read in the book "A modern history of Japan" by Andrew Gordon and other articles, that most of the Japanese townspeople were farmers(about 80% I suppose) during the Edo period. But according to ...
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Was there a Japanese Exchange, à la Columbian Exchange?

After the European (re-)discovery of the Americas, there was a widespread transfer of animals, plants, culture, human populations, communicable diseases, technology and ideas between the Americas and ...
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How did life for commoners in Okinawa change with the Satsuma invasion?

In 1609, the kingdom of Ryukyu which covers what is today known as Okinawa, was invaded by the Japanese Satsuma clan. How did this affect the everyday life of commoners (Everybody not noble or a ...

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