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KyotoAn Urban History of Japan's Premodern Capital$
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Matthew Stavros

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780824838799

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824838799.001.0001

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Making Kyoto Medieval

Making Kyoto Medieval

A Fractured, Privatized, and Pluralistic City

(p.43) 3 Making Kyoto Medieval

Matthew Stavros

University of Hawai'i Press

Moving into the medieval era, power shifted from the imperial palace to the homes of court aristocrats, religious institutions, and in time, retired emperors and warriors. Chapter 3 examines the way dense clusters of urban development formed around many of these “nodes” of privatized political and economic influence. The advent of nodal urban development constituted a profound spatial transformation whereby the capital evolved from a state- and emperor-centric city into a composite of urban islands associated more by proximity than a unified urban identity. The structure of the city became a homology of the socio-political conditions of the medieval era: space in medieval Kyoto, like authority, was fractured, privatized, and pluralistic.

Keywords:   Kamigyo, Shimogyo, sato-dairi, Shirakawa, Toba, Hojuji, temple-towns

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