Tag Archives: Matthew C. Perry

Tokugawa Shogunate


  • Tokugawa Shogunate’s rule in Japan
  • Tokugawa economic and social structure
  • Social changes and discontent
  • Challenges to Tokugawa Shogunate’s rule

Tokugawa Shogunate (Wikipedia)

Tokugawa Ieyasu

Tozama Daimyo (Wikipedia)

Closed Country Edict (1635)

“The Way of the Samurai” (bushido 武士道)

Forty Seven Ronin

1798: Secret Plan for the Government, Honda Toshiaki

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IB Topics & Questions (Japan)

IB Topics

  • Tokugawa Shogunate’s rule in Japan and challenges to it
  • Tokugawa economic and social structure; social changes and discontent
  • Commodore Perry’s expedition and the crisis of the Bakumatsu period, 1853‑1868.
  • Japan: Meiji Restoration (1868) in Japan
  • the 1889 Constitution
  • Japan: Social, cultural and economic developments in Meiji Japan
  • Japan: Commitment to military power
  • Victory in the Sino–Japanese War (1894‑5)
  • Victory in the Russo–Japanese War (1904‑5

IB Questions

  • Compare and contrast the attitudes of China and Japan to reform and change during the period 1861 to 1894.
  • Compare and contrast Chinese (1861–94) and Japanese (1868–94) attempts at self-strengthening and modernization in  the second half of the nineteenth century. (N08)
  • To what extent did the emergence of “Dutch Learning” (rangaku) and of “National Learning” (kokugaku) contribute to the decline of the Tokugawa shogunate (Bakufu) in Japan?
  • Compare and contrast the kokugaku (National Learning) and rangaku (Dutch Learning) movements in Japan and their impact upon the Tokugawa Shogunate. (N09)
  • Analyse the role of the Satsuma and Chōshū clans in bringing about the collapse of the Tokugawa Shoganate (Bakufu) in Japan between 1850 and 1868.
  • To what extent do you agree with the view that the Tokugawa Shogunate was facing collapse before the arrival of Commodore Perry’s mission in 1853? (M09)
  • “By 1853 the isolation policy of the Tokugawa had already failed.” To what extent do you agree with this statement?
  • “Commodore Perry knocked on an open door.” To what extent do you agree with this assessment of the Japanese response to Commodore Perry’s arrival in Japan in 1853? (M07)
  • To what extent did social and economic change threaten Tokugawa rule in Japan in the early nineteenth century? (M08)
  • To what extent by 1890 had the Meiji Restoration (1868) in Japan created a “modern late-nineteenth century state”? (N09)
  • To what extent had the changes introduced under the Meiji Restoration (1868) transformed Japan by 1890? (N08)
  • Assess the role of the genro in Meiji Japan, 1868 to 1912.
  • To what extent were changes in Japanese society between 1868 and 1889 reflected in the Meiji Constitution?
  • To what extent had Japan become industrialized by 1912, the end of the Meiji period? (M08)
  • “During the Meiji period, Japan changed its clothes but not its soul.” Is this a fair assessment of the modernization and westernization which took place over that period?
  • Why did Japan experience rapid modernisation in the second half of the nineteenth century? (M09)
  • “Between 1894 and 1905 Japan emerged as the most powerful military presence in North East Asia.” (M09)
  • To what extent do you agree with this statement?
  • Account for the rise of Japan to international importance in the region between 1855 and 1905. (N08)
  • To what extent did the Sino-Japanese war (1894-5) and the Russo-Japanese war (1904-5) change the balance of power in East Asia?
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