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Jun 3, 2022

The Jokyu Rebellion is one of the more minor conflicts in Japanese history; yet it also represents a tipping of the political balance of Japan that, eventually, will profoundly reshape the country. This week, we explore one of the chronicles of that conflict to see what we can learn about it, and about medieval Japan...


May 20, 2022

This week, we're taking on whaling in Tokugawa Japan. What is 'traditional' whaling in Japan? How and why did people take to the seas to hunt whales? And how is all of this wrapped up in the modern debate around whaling in Japan?

Side note: wet weather in Seattle is giving me mad allergies, so apologies if I sound extra...


Apr 29, 2022

There's no regular History of Japan episode this week. Instead, here's a wonderful episode of my other podcast, Criminal Records, about three things of deep concern to any self-respecting podcast audience: organized crime, the drug trade, and rocket launchers!

See you all next week.


Jan 21, 2022

This week, we're covering the founding of Japan's most unusual city: Nagasaki, unique among major Japanese cities in being founded under the impetus of the Jesuit order. Why did Jesuit missionaries want a port of their own, and who did they find to give it to them?

Show notes


Oct 8, 2021

How did it all go so very wrong?

Show notes here.