The origins of socialist thought in Japan - John Crump

Socialism first gained a major foothold in Japan after the revolution and the subsequent Meiji restoration of 1868. Against the background of the rapid development of capitalism in Japan after the revolution, and the accompanying emergence of the working class, this study shows how early Japanese socialists drew on both Western influences and elements from traditional Japanese culture. This book made an original contribution to the study of Japan in the 1980s, its unique perspective shines a bright light on debates still relevant today.

Submitted by Craftwork on November 24, 2016

Part 1: To the End of the Russo-Japanese War (1905)

  1. The Development of Capitalism in Japan and the Forming of a Working Class
  • The Revolution of 1868
  • Industrialisation
  • The Forming of a Working Class
    • The Samurai
    • The Artisans
    • The Peasants
    • Women
  • Oppression by the State
  1. Populism (Narodnism) and Other Russian Influences
  • Western Sources
  • First News of ‘Socialism’
  • The ‘People’s Rights Movement’
  • Russian Populism
  • Tolstoy
  • The Russo-Japanese War
  1. Studying at the Feet of European Social-Democracy
  • Sakai Yūzaburō
  • ‘Authorities’ on ‘Socialism’
    • Schäffle’s Quintessence of Socialism
    • Kirkup, Dawson, Ely
  • False Optimism
  • The SPD
    • State Capitalism Again
    • Reformism
    • Parliamentarism
  • European Social-Democracy and the Russo-Japanese War
  • Marx and Engels
  1. Influences from English-Speaking Countries – America, Britain, New Zealand
  • Japanese Students in America
  • Christianity and ‘Socialism’
  • Shying Away from the Class Struggle
  • Henry George
  • Fabianism
  • Percy Alden
  • Labour Leaders
  • New Zealand’s Lib-Labs
  • Stony Ground
  1. The Legacy from the Old Society
  • Money and the Samurai
    • Samurai Among the Early Socialists
    • The Samurai Ethos
    • Commodity Production
  • Money and the Peasants
  • Confucianism
  • Taoism
  • Elitism
  • The Monarchy
  1. Japanese ‘Socialism’ to 1905
  • ‘Socialism’ as an Alternative Form of Capitalism

Part Two: From the End of the Russo-Japanese War (1905) to the Great Rice Riots (1918)

  1. The Further Development of Capitalism and the First Flexing of the Working Class’ Muscles
  • The Conditions of the Workers
  • Strikes and Insurrections
  • Direct Action in Practice and Theory
  • The First World War
  • The Rice Riots
  1. Kōtoku Shūsui and the American Connection
  • The Socialist Party of America
  • The Socialist Labour Party
  • The Industrial Workers of the World
  • The Anarchists
  • The Shakai Kakumeitō (Social-Revolutionary Party)
  1. Inspiration from Russia
  • The Nagasaki Russians
  • Bronislas Pilsudski and Grigorii Gershuni
  • The Russian Anarchists
  • Kropotkin
  • The Russian Revolution
  1. Social-Democracy and Syndicalism in Contention – European Battles Refought in Japan
  • Arnold Roller’s The Social General Strike
  • The Emergence of Support for Kōtoku’s Direct Actionism
  • The Conference of the Nippon Shakaitō (Socialist Party of Japan)
  • The Widening Rift
  • Keir Hardie in Japan
  • The Social-Democratic Faction
  • The Syndicalist Faction
  1. Christians and Terrorists
  • Japanese Christian Socialism
  • Terrorism
    • State Repression
    • To Make the Emperor Bleed
    • High Treason
  1. Japanese ‘Socialism’ to 1918
  • The Socialist Movement
  • Was an Alternative to Capitalism Posed?

Appendix A: ‘Abolish Money!’ by Kōtoku Shūsui

Appendix B: ‘The Change in my Thought’ by Kōtoku Shūsui