Meiji Isshin – The change of government from the Tokugawa Shogunate to, in theory, putting the Emperor Meiji
in charge of the government is refered to as the “Meiji Isshin (維新), which is usually translated in English as
the “Meiji Restoration”, a change by restoring an old system. However, many historians see this change as
forward looking, a “modernization” of Japan and an embracing of Western ideas of government, education, the
military, technology, etc. Having read Chapter Eight, the primary documents, looked at the PowerPoints and
watched the videos, in your view is it more accurate to see the Meiji Isshin (維新) as a “forward looking
revolution” or as a “conservative reaction or restoration of the past”? Use evidence from the primary and
secondary sources to back up your argument.
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