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Cross-Cultural Migrations in Japan in a Comparative Perspective, 1600–2000

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Chapter Summary

Japan plays a minor role in the historiography of global migration history. By focusing on the six main types of cross-cultural migration in Japan since 1600 we will connect what until now have been rather isolated and often unconnected topics in the historical literature: migration, urbanization, economic history, imperialism, and military history. These provide the necessary data on the Japanese moving as soldiers and sailors, as colonists (within and outside Japan), as city dwellers, emigrants, return migrants, seasonal workers, and finally as immigrants from abroad. By reconstructing their mobility in the past four centuries we will provide benchmarks in the form of migration rates per fifty-year period, differentiated for the six main types of cross-cultural migration; benchmarks that can then be used to compare Japan with other parts of Asia and Europe.

Keywords: city dwellers; colonists; cross-cultural migration; Japanese government; seasonal workers



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