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Evaluating EvidenceA Positivist Approach to Reading Sources on Modern Japan$
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George Akita

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780824825607

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824825607.001.0001

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Japan’s Postwar Positivists

Japan’s Postwar Positivists

The IHKM and YAKM Projects

(p.9) Chapter 1 Japan’s Postwar Positivists
Evaluating Evidence

George Akita

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter begins with a narrative on the process of transcribing sources written in sōsho with a group of students and professors, which resulted in the nine-volume Itō Hirobumi Kankei Monjo (IHKM). This experience led to the task of transcribing the Yamagata Aritomo Kankei Monjo (YAKM) with Itō Takashi—a leader of the IHKM project. The chapter then presents reasons for the discernible change in tone and direction toward positivism in the study of modern Japanese political history. This latter part is derived from anecdotal “evidence” and a “feel” for the scholarly atmosphere based on nearly half a century of close observation and field work in Japan.

Keywords:   Itō Hirobumi Kankei Monjo, Yamagata Aritomo Kankei Monjo, Japanese political history, Itō Takashi, IHKM project, modern Japan, YAKM

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