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Resources: History

This page introduces open-access resources related to pre-modern and modern Japanese history.

Aftermath of the East Asian War of 1592-98

Aftermath is a digital humanities research project run by the Autonomous University of Barcelona exploring the legacy of Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s invasions of Korea, also known as the Imjin War. The research project is scheduled to continue until 2023, and will focus on accessing primary sources in Japanese, Korean, Chinese and European languages to build a comprehensive understand the impact of this period on early modern East Asia. The project incorporates a publicly accessible multilingual bibliographic database.

Aftermath project website
Bibliographic database

Bodies and Structures 1.0: Deep-Mapping Modern East Asian History

Bodies and Structures is a digital humanities project by Japan scholars David Ambaras (North Carolina State University) and Kate McDonald (University of California, Santa Barbara). It seeks to map connections over time and space that have been formative in the history of East Asia. The website hosts five teaching modules and includes a guide suggesting ways in which it can be used as a teaching resource.

Bodies and Structures website

Japan Centre for Asian Historical Records (JACAR)

JACAR is an open-access online archive of Japanese historical records pertaining to Asia and sourced from the National Archives of Japan, Japan’s Diplomatic Archives and the National Institute for Defense Studies.

JACAR website

‘Meiji at 150’ Digital Teaching Resource

This open-access online resource was developed by the University of British Columbia. It collates a rich selection of resources into visual essays on 15 different themes for use in classrooms, and also features a page of relevant resources from third-party institutions.

Meiji at 150 website

Shibusawa Shashi (‘Company History’) Database

An initiative of the Shibusawa Eichi Memorial Foundation, this database collates over 15,000 company histories from the Meiji period onward. Company histories have customarily produced by Japanese companies to commemorate major anniversaries. In addition to profiling the development of the companies themselves, they can also provide insight into the economics, politics and industrial practices of the time in which they were written. The database itself is in Japanese, however comprehensive usage instructions are provided in English.

Shibusawa Shashi Database

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Main image: Mount Fuji as Seen from Kashiwabara, Kazumasa Ogawa (Japanese, 1860 – 1929), 1897, Hand-colored albumen silver print; via Rawpixels (Source).

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