History of Japan (history)

Our topic this week is Hagakure, one of the best known works on bushido ever written. Where did it come from? What is its purpose? What is its legacy? All that and more, this week!

Direct download: History_of_Japan_77.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

This week, we're going to take a look at the collection of supernatural stories published by American author and journalist Lafcadio Hearn, called Kwaidan. We'll look at Hearn's life and how he came to Japan, and also discuss the nature of one of the creatures he describes: the yuki onna, or snow woman. We'll close with a reading of Hearn's story on the yuki onna

Direct download: History_of_Japan_75.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 12:33pm EDT

We'll be taking things back to the Heian Period this week for the story of the great rebel Taira no Masakado. His rebellion, however, is only half the story -- after he dies, things get very interesting indeed...

 

Direct download: History_of_Japan_74.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

After his defeat at the hands of Hideyoshi, Tokugawa Ieyasu will lie low for a decade or so, biding his time. However, when the opportunity presents itself with Hideyoshi's death and the succession of his young heir, Ieyasu will strike at last, and gamble everything for one more shot at power.

Direct download: History_of_Japan_73.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

This week, join us for part one of the life of Tokugawa Ieyasu. A brilliant and ambitious man, Ieyasu began his life as a hostage for the good behavior of his middling-rank family. By 1584, however, he would be in position to make his first bid for power.

Direct download: History_of_Japan_72.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

This week, we're going to to talk about the life of Yamaguchi Yoshiko, the Chinese-born actress turned politician who went from propaganda actress to one of the most moving voices for Sino-Japanese reconciliation.

Direct download: History_of_Japan_71.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

As a supplemental to this week's episode, here's an entire episode of Zero Hour, courtesy of the Internet Archive. This episode is from September 14, 1944. If you're looking to hear some genuine old fashioned World War II propaganda, now's your chance!

Direct download: Zero_Hour_9-14-44.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Note: This is a revised version to fix a technical issue with the original release

This week, we're going to talk about the life of Iva Toguri, the woman most associated with the infamous (and legendary) role of the Tokyo Rose. Labelled as a traitor for her actions during the war, Toguri fought hard for her citizenship and her reputation, and was rewarded for her tenacity decades after the fact.

Direct download: History_of_Japan_70.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

This week, we'll discuss the Second Konoe Cabinet, which was torn by indecision and plagued by bad leadership. The Japanese leadership will alienate the US by signing the Tripartite Pact, and their attempts to bridge the gap with the US will be plagued by bad management and failure. 

Direct download: History_of_Japan_66.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:18pm EDT

This week, we'll delve into the origins of Japan's war with China and the strain that conflict placed on Japan's relationship with the US. In the course of the 9 years from the invasion of Manchuria to the second appointment of Konoe Fumimaro as Prime Minister, Japan will become bogged down in an unwinnable war and find itself facing a far more assertive United States. 

Direct download: History_of_Japan_65.mp3
Category:History -- posted at: 7:00am EDT