Meiji Restoration Effects

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Japan’s Meiji Restoration of 1868 had many effects on Japan and the world from 1840 to 1920. One of these major effects of the event was the fact that the previously feudal country was transformed into an empire that was entirely capable of competing with many of the greatest powers of the time. Furthermore, the new Japanese education, healthcare, agriculture, science, technology, and military systems were all adapted from those of Western nations, but Japan continued to uphold its traditional values and traditions. This would greatly affect how Japan would interact with the rest of the world, setting the stage for even larger issues. The effect of the Restoration are clearly outlined in the many documents that will be analyzed.

First, it
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Giving in to the ideas of Western industrialization, Japan quickly improved the standard of living for its citizens by expanding railways and firms, as seen in Document 7. In 1872, Japan boasted a modest 29 kilometers of railway tracks. This number shot up to 11,384 by 1912, a short 40 years later. Also as a way to help improve the life of Japanese citizens, Japan created a constitution as a part of its new constitutional monarchy, as seen in Document 4. The Constitution of the Empire of Japan (1889)’s Chapter II is dedicated entirely to the rights and duties of subject which includes democratic ideas like fair trial, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and so on. While the Japanese monarchy maintained traditional beliefs, the inclusion of democratic values was new and was unsurprisingly respected by the masses. Yet again, this is a clear example of Japan’s willingness to adapt Western beliefs to fit into their own political system. It was through the adoption of adapted Western tactics and technology that Japan was able to modernize so quickly and efficiently. Industrialization became a major focus after the Japanese saw Commodore Perry 's powerful ships and weapons and interesting technologies. Japan went on to later create an efficient rail system, improve communications technology, and start up the mechanizing industry. This is all incredibly…show more content…
From culture and government, to technology and transportation, to military and conflict, Japan made its mark as a powerful Asian imperial power, as seen by analyzing the various documents provided. Japan’s imperialism and industrialization not only made a mark in the late 19th century, but also continues to influence the world to this
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