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Under the new law, public servants and others cleared for access to such information could get up to 10 years in prison for leaks. At present, they face one year imprisonment except for defense officials, who are subject to up to five years in prison or 10 years if the data came from the U.

Discover Thomson Reuters. Directory of sites. United States. Linda Sieg , Kiyoshi Takenaka. Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe walks after delivering his policy speech at the lower house of parliament in Tokyo October 15, Ritualization and De-ritualization. Speaking of ritualization and de-ritualization calls attention to the fact that a given social practice may be the focus of much ritual in one era, but that the practice may not necessarily have always been so ritualized.

Further, the fact that it is ritualized at one point in time should not lead us to assume that it will necessarily always be the object of ritual for all future time. When the state takes an interest in the practice in question, the earlier ritual practitioners may be displaced, replaced with state ritualists, or the state's involvement may lead to a de-ritualization of the practice, the removal from it of ritual. Depending upon the degree of continued cultural significance of the formerly ritualized practice, it-or some aspect of it-may later be ritualized again, depending upon the ability of entrepreneurial ritualists to create a sense of need for ritual and upon their ability successfully to commoditize and spread the rites they create in response to the "need" so created.

This paper attempts a preliminary response to some of the following questions.

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What circumstances lead the state to evince an interest in ritual? When the state becomes involved, how does the character of ritual previously performed change? How is the social standing of the former ritualists affected? Do they, for example, attempt to aggrandize their own position by drawing off the prestige and "authorization" of the state? Where one group of ritualists has formerly monopolized ritualization of the practice, does the state's involvement offer new scope for other religious practitioners or institutions to create rites of their own invention?

Or does the state monopolize ritualization of the practice as a means to achieve semiotic hegemony over it? How is the meaning of the practice in question affected?

Meiji Period in Japan

If the state should subsequently withdraw from ritualizing the practice, is the practice de-ritualized as a result? Where this is the case, what leads the state to withdraw? If the result of the state's withdrawal is de-ritualization, how are the former practitioners both ritualists and clients affected? In what circumstances does it become possible to ritualize the practice again later?

What social actors become involved; how is the nature of the practice affected, what larger social trends are reflected in the process? During the Tokugawa era and for much of previous Japanese history , midwifery was practiced outside any state framework. Pregnancy and childbirth were extensively ritualized, and the midwife's role was highly ritualistic in character. The birth of a woman's first child constituted a rite of passage into the community of fully adult women, raising her status within her affinal family and cementing her membership in it Matsuoka , This traditional mode of birth required women to accumulate specialized, sex-segregated knowledge based on their own experience and transmitted over generations to younger women Aoyagi , ff.

It was expected that a special relationship would be formed between a child and the midwife who delivered it, conferring upon the child duties of gift-giving, and. Typically the band contained a charm for safe childbirth; the charms showed much regional variation, but cloth from the husband's loincloth was one widely used. From that time on, the woman was subject to food taboos specific to pregnancy again with much regional variation , and was instructed to keep the band tight, to prevent the fetus from growing too large Takagi ; Tachibana Midwives were typically women who themselves had borne several children, who practiced and resided in the same village as the women they served, not generally travelling widely to deliver women outside their own areas.

Their ritualized character derived in no small part from beliefs surrounding the fetus and newborn children, according to which both represented the transit from another world of a soul into human form in this world ; in the process the midwife was no less than a psychopomp, a conductor of souls, and master of their transition from the liminal state within the womb to a full-fledged member of the human community Kamata Here it is important to note which moments of the journey were singled out for ritualization, as they do not necessarily correspond neatly with western practice, and it would be an error to import assumptions from outside the Japanese cultural sphere.

The idea of a "moment of conception" attracted no ritual or ideological attention. The binding of the iwata obi marks the pregnancy's public visibility, the moment from which a woman entered the liminal status of the ninpu a "pregnant woman".

Meiji Period in Japan

The existence of the fetus is recognized from this stage, called by a number of regionally specific names, not all of which incorporate the character ko or ji which would mark it as distinctively human Ijima , There is much evidence to suggest that the fetus before birth was not regarded as fully human; explication of this evidence may proceed more smoothly on the basis of a short discussion of premodern practices of contraception, abortion, and infanticide.

All three of these practices were widespread in Tokugawa Japan. Although much controversy surrounds the question of the weight any of them should be given in accounting for the stability of population figures during the era, no one seriously argues that they did not exist.

In the absence of reliable contraceptive barrier devices, contraceptive and abortion practice probably relied heavily on locally-variant pharmacopeia and magical means Aoyagi , , prolonged breast feeding, assisted by patterns of seasonal migration by men of some areas for work, so that males could be absent for long periods.

Contraceptive pharmacopeia and botanical abortifacients were the province of the midwife, and in many cases it was she who carried out infanticide if the former two measures failed.

Down and Out in Late Meiji Japan – UH Press

It is important to recognize that in a premodern context contraception, abortion, and infanticide were not alternatives to each other in the sense of clearly bounded choices an individual might make in any case it would not necessarily have been the pregnant or newly postpartum woman making any such "choice". Fetuses not carried to term, whether as the result of abortion or miscarriage, did not typically receive the full funeral rites due an adult; generally they received none at all, though there are scattered cases of memorialization of both.

Both the shogunate and the domains han repeatedly inveighed against both abortion and infanticide mabiki and other terms , but the frequency of farmine and widespread poverty among the peasantry. Neither was frequently punished, and neither was heavily stigmatized by religious institutions.

by Huffman, James L

Infanticide, generally by strangling or asphyxiation, was apparently carried out immediately after birth. Midwives asked whether the newborn was to be kept or "sent back" oku ka, kaesu ka , sent back, that is, to the world of the gods from which it had come. This question was not necessarily addressed to the birth mother, who might not be the senior woman of the household, but more likely to her mother-in-law or husband. Given the communal nature of the "choice" and "decision", little importance attached to assigning responsibility for the event, which might be carried out by the mother-in-law or husband if a midwife was absent, or if it took place after she had left the scene.

There is no evidence to suggest that infanticide was regarded in the same light as homicide; to "return" kaesu is distinctly different from killing korosu Ijima , Buddhism, Shinto, and Shugendo had virtually nothing to say on the subjects of contraception, abortion, and infanticide.

Instead, religious institutions concerned themselves with birth and related practices in a framework of purity and pollution, according to which childbirth was generally polluting because of the blood spilled. The mother and child, first and foremost, were polluted for a period after the birth, but the father and co-residents also were expected to refrain from visiting shrines and temples. Men in some occupational groups like fishing and forestry ruled over by female deities refrained from work for a period after their wives gave birth because some of the pollution from the birth adhered to them as well Wigmore , vol.

During the Edo period Buddhism developed a specialization in rites of death and ancestor memorialization reflected in this belief, which further reflected the misogyny of the tradition and the way in which it absorbed folk notions about the pollution of women Takemi A newborn generally made its first "public debut" with a visit to a Shinto shrine the hatsu miya mairi.

The occasion was polysemous. First, it marked the emergence of mother, child, and the domestic group from a state of pollution, marked by the lifting of taboos upon approaching the altars of the kami. It constituted a presentation of the child to the local tutelary deity, asking for its blessing and protection of the infant. At this time it was also customary for the husband's mother rather than the birth mother to present the child before the altar, marking the incorporation of the newborn into the husband's family line, and also for her to present the child to neighbors and relatives Wigmore , vol.

Meiji Restoration

Presentation before the tutelary deity rested on the rationale that the newborn is a member of the human community under that deity's protection. In this sense, the "humanity" of the newborn was unquestionable, but other customs suggest a different tradition of thought in which an element of liminality remained much longer after birth. There are widespread proverbs, sayings to the effect that a child could not be counted as fully a member of the human world until it reached the age of seven.

Until that time, it. These proverbs undoubtedly reflect a recognition of high rate of infant mortality from disease and famine, a "fate" which could be construed as returning to the other world from which it had come Ijima , Until the end of the nineteenth century, Shinto had no comprehensive organizational structure.

Japanese Buddhism was divided into separate schools, the priests and temples of which were organized hierarchically. Shinto had no comparable organization for its cult centers, called shrines by convention, to distinguish them from Buddhist temples. Shinto had no central figure with authority over the entire tradition, nor were priests trained in any unified doctrine or practice. Known in some way to the greatest number of people, Shinto' s first layer was constituted by the ritual practice of the imperial court, which maintained a formal schedule of elaborate ritual for both Buddhas and kami.

The emperor presided over rites of the harvest, the equinoxes, worship of the four direction, New Year's, and a host of other rites Haga By an edict of , the Yoshida and Shirakawa were granted the authority to rank all shrines and priests mainly on the basis of antiquity, lineage, and payments made to the two houses by the shrine or priest desiring an increase of rank.

The Shirakawa had charge of those shrines linked directly to the imperial house, while the Yoshida supervised the remainder, the great majority.

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  • Both maintained separate cults of the eight tutelary deities of the imperial house, and this gave them special priestly authority in the conduct of imperial rites Murakami , While there were many Shinto ceremonies, the rites of the court were by no means exclusively Shinto in character.

    The emperor and members of the court also performed many Buddhist rites. The imperial family were officially parishioners of the Shingon school of Buddhism and were cremated according to Buddhist funeral rites. Many members of both the court and the imperial family joined Buddhist monasteries, and Buddhist memorial rites for the spirits of the imperial ancestors were a major part of court rites.

    To make matters still more complicated, Masters.

    Scarcity of funds prohibited fulfilling the entire ritual schedule because the shogun' s government the actual ruling body of the country and holder of imperial purse strings was intent upon establishing the cult of its founder, Tokugawa Ieyasu. Accordingly, it was little interested in permitting imperial ritual to be carried out on a comparable scale. While imperial ritual continued to be performed on a diminished scale at the court in Kyoto, the sacerdotal roles of the emperor were widely known to exist, but probably not understood in any detail by the rest of the populace.

    Feudal lords, who were frequently related to the court by marriage, were aware of the court and its ritual life. Many artisans and merchants were linked to various aristocratic houses as suppliers of goods used in ritual, and so they were also conscious of court rites.

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    The people as a whole were required to observe mourning for deaths at court and therefore knew of imperial funeral and memorial rites. Ise pilgrimage had an indirect influence on popular awareness of the court and its affairs, because a connection between the deities enshrined there and the imperial court was generally known Fukaya , The second layer of Tokugawa Shinto was constituted by the practice of those great shrines of the nation large enough to have their own hereditary priesthoods, branch shrines, and extensive land holding. In addition, the extensive development of pilgrimages further popularized the cults of transregionally known kami, those known to people in more than one domain.

    The phenomenon of branch shrines first developed in the medieval period in three main ways: 1 when clans or their subgroupings migrated to a new area and established a new shrine of the clan deity; 2 through the dedication of fiefs to shrines; and 3 through the appearance of worshipers of the original shrine's deities in a distant area. A branch shrine was- officially linked to the original shrine through a ceremony in which the new shrine installed as its object of worship the "divided spirit" bunrei of the original shrine Ono , The result was a main shrine that received tribute and pilgrims from its distant branch shrines.

    Priests from the branch shrines in some cases were trained at the main shrine and then spread the word of the virtues of the main shrine's deities, and of pilgrimage to it, among the people living on the shrine's detached land holding. Buddhist priests participated widely in shrine rites, often leading villagers on pilgrimages or journeying to shrines to undertake austerities for their own spiritual practice.

    Even large shrines of this layer generally existed as one component of a temple-shrine complex, performing their rites side by side with a temple, generally for the same audience as the temple's rites. In such a complex, the Shinto priests were subordinated to their Buddhist colleagues, but at the popular level there was no thoroughgoing distinction between the cults of Buddhas and kami. The third layer of Tokugawa Shinto encompassed by far the greatest number of shrines during the period, the local tutelary shrines of village communities, the ujigami and ubusuna shrines these terms were basically interchangeable, both connoting the idea of a territorial protective deity.

    In most cases village shrines did not have a professional priest but were served by adult men of the village on a rotating basis, or their cults were monopolized by village elites who formed a shrine guild jniyaza and other terms. While for the most part any villager might observe the festival of the village deity, actual participation was most frequently restricted in a manner mirroring the social hierarchy of the village, the most prestigious roles automatically accorded to those with the highest social standing. Several periods divide the history of state involvement with Shinto ritual from to Each of the temporal divisions identified below is characterized by a distinctive attitude of the state toward Shinto of the Shinto priesthood toward the state, and a particular mode of involvement of the populace and of popular religious movements in Shinto Hardacre , Use the browser back button to go back The finish button won't work.

    Use the main navigation to move through the process. Add this Learning Object to My Content. Secret Circulation. Add this Media File to My Content. While organized newspapers were only introduced to Japan after the Meiji Restoration, they had their roots in the broadsheets, pamphlets, and woodblock prints that had secretly circulated under Tokugawa censorship when public discussion of public affairs was prohibited. Afterwards, the newspapers published by the Westerners now living in Yokohama gave the Japanese an early taste for the current events that were culled from overseas newspapers.

    Henceforth, it became impossible for the government to stem the flow of information circulating throughout Japan. Newspapers Permitted. In , shortly after the Restoration, newspapers were permitted, and it became acceptable to publish political news and express public opinion. However, the government maintained control of the press, and direct criticism of policies that were deemed "important" to the progress of Japan were still restricted.

    Instead, the government used the press to promote modernity and encourage national pride in a society suffering the natural anxieties brought on by radical change.