Japanization is the process in which Japanese culture dominates, assimilates, or influences other cultures, in general. According to The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, "Japanize" means "To make or become Japanese in form, idiom, style, or character".[1]

Modern period

In modern sense and day, many countries and regions in East Asia particularly South Korea and Taiwan, has absorbed and incorporated Japanese popular culture such as music and video for many years after Japanese growth during the 1980s and 1990s. Many Japanese films, especially soap operas are popular in Taiwan, South Korea and China among the younger generations after the movies are translated to their local languages. Japanese electronic products and food are found throughout East Asia.

Imperial period

Chinese name
Traditional Chinese皇民化運動
Simplified Chinese皇民化运动
Literal meaningmovement to make people become subjects of the emperor
Alternative Chinese name
Traditional Chinese日本化運動
Simplified Chinese日本化运动
Literal meaningmovement to make something more Japanese
Korean name
황민화운동 (alt.)
皇民化運動 (alt.)
Japanese name
皇民化政策 (alt.)
こうみんかせいさく (alt.)

In terms of World War II and military conquests, Japanization takes a negative meaning because of military conquests and forced introduction of Japanese culture by the government.

During pre-imperial (pre-1868) period a peaceful diplomacy was practiced during which Japan did not expand much in territories beyond its own islands.


After the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Japan began to follow the way of the western imperialism and expansionism. in 1879, Japan officially annexed the Ryūkyū Kingdom, which was a tributary kingdom of both the Qing Dynasty and the Empire of Japan.

Though the Ryukyuan languages belong to the Japonic language family, the Japanese language is not intelligible to the monolingual speakers of the Ryukyuan languages. The Japanese government began to promote the language "standardization" program and took the Ryukyuan languages as dialects. In schools, "standard" Japanese was promoted, and there were portraits of the Japanese Emperor and Empress were introduced. Many high-ranking Japanese military officers went to inspect Okinawan schools to ensure that the Japanization was functioning well in the education system. This measure did not meet the expected success at the beginning, partly because many local children's share of their heavy family labor impedes their presence in schools, and partly because people of the old Okinawan leading class received a more Chinese-styled education and were not interested in learning "standard" Japanese. As measures of assimilation, the Japanese government also discouraged some local customs.[2]

At the beginning, these assimilation measures met stronger reluctance of local people. However, after China was defeated in the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895, people lost their confidence in China, and the reluctance against the Japanization, though it did not disappear, became weaker. Men and women began to adopt more Japanese-styled names.[2]


Taiwan was ceded to the Empire of Japan in 1895 as a result of the First Sino-Japanese War. At the beginning, Taiwan was governed rather like a colony. In 1936, following the arrival of the 17th governor-general, Seizō Kobayashi, there was a change in the Japanese governance in Taiwan.

Kobayashi was the first non-civilian governor-general since 1919. He proposed three principles of the new governance: the Kōminka movement (皇民化運動), industrialization, and making Taiwan as a base for the southward expansion.[3]

"Kōminka" literally means "to make people become subjects of the emperor". The program itself had three components. First, the "national language movement" (國語運動 kokugo undō) promoted the Japanese language by teaching Japanese instead of Taiwanese Hokkien in the schools and by banning the use of Taiwanese Hokkien in the press. Second, the "name changing program" (改姓名 kaiseimei) replaced Taiwanese's Chinese names with Japanese names. Finally, the "volunteers' system" (志願兵制度 shiganhei seidō) drafted Taiwanese subjects into the Imperial Japanese Army and encouraged them to die in service of the emperor.[4]


ChosunIlbo (January1-1940)
Korean newspaper Chosun Ilbo 1940.1.1

In Korea during the Second World War the use of written Korean in education and publication was banned by the Empire of Japan, but this did not cause a significant change in the use of the Korean language, which remained widely used throughout the colonisation.


  1. ^ Japanization – definition of Japanization by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia
  2. ^ a b JPRI Occasional Paper No. 8
  3. ^ 第一節 皇民化運動
  4. ^ Ching, Leo T. S. (2001). Becoming "Japanese": Colonial Taiwan and the Politics of Identity Formation. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 93–95. ISBN 0-520-22553-8.

See also

Asakawa brothers

Noritaka Asakawa (浅川 伯教, Asakawa Noritaka, August 4, 1884 – January 14, 1964) (ja:) and Takumi Asakawa (浅川 巧, Asakawa Takumi, January 15, 1891 – April 2, 1931) (ja:) are two brothers who pioneered the study of Korean ceramics, and who worked to preserve and promote indigenous Korean culture. The two brothers were born in Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan, but would move to the Korean peninsula by early adulthood. Noritaka introduced Soetsu Yanagi to Joseon ceramics, and he alongside his brother greatly influenced Yanagi who later stated, "My encounter with Yi (Joseon) Dynasty everyday utensils was a critical one in that it determined the course of my whole life."During Japan's occupation of Korea, Noritaka was stationed as a Japanese elementary school teacher in present-day Seoul with Takumi being sent there a year later as a forest engineer. The Asakawa brothers alongside Yanagi were critical of the Japanization of Korea during Japan's occupation, and stressed the value and importance in maintaining Korea's native culture. In 1924 the three founded the National Folk Museum of Korea, in Seoul, displaying examples of Korean culture as well as their own research.Noritaka devoted the remainder of his life to searching for and studying Joseon ceramics. During his lifetime he surveyed 700 sites of old kilns, recovering and classifying enormous quantities of pieces and remnants. A member of the Society for the Appreciation of Korean Arts and Crafts, the essays he wrote appeared in such periodicals as the Shirakaba, the leading literary magazine in his time, and would harbinger appreciation of Joseon ware outside of Korea. Noritaka's body of work continues to receive academic praise to this day. Additionally, Noritaka produced paintings that were often inspired by the Korean artifacts he observed. His brother Takumi would ultimately publish "Survey of Korean Ceramics," an enormously important reference volume that remains in print today, detailing and describing various aspects of Korean ceramics.Takumi lived as a Korean, and died at the age of 40 after delivering his final words "bury my bones in the land of Joseon." Beloved by the locals he was given a funerary procession, and would posthumously become well known for his work promoting Korean culture, being depicted in the novel "The Man of White Porcelain", by Emiya Takayuki, which is due to be released as a film in 2012. In 2011, Chiba City Art Museum held a special exhibition titled "Asakawa Noritaka & Takumi Brothers: Their Souls and Their Visions" to commemorate the 120th anniversary of Takumi's birth.

Chōsen Shrine

Joseon Shrine (Korean: 조선신궁, Hanja: 朝鮮神宮) was the most important Shinto shrine in Korea from 1925 to 1945, during the period of Japanese rule. The famous architect and architectural historian Itō Chūta, also responsible for Meiji Jingū, contributed to its planning.

Hangul Day

The Korean Alphabet Day, known as Hangeul Day (한글날) in South Korea, and Chosŏn'gŭl Day in North Korea, is a national Korean commemorative day marking the invention and the proclamation of Hangul (한글; 조선글), the alphabet of the Korean language, by the 15th-century Korean monarch Sejong the Great. It is observed on October 9 in South Korea and on January 15 in North Korea. In 2013, Hangul Day became a national holiday in South Korea.

Index of sociology articles

This is an index of sociology articles. For a shorter list, see List of basic sociology topics.


Japanification (日本化) is the process of becoming or wishing to become a member of Japanese society. It most commonly refers to expats living for an extended period of time in Japan, though it may also be used to describe persons living outside Japan who have a certain affinity to some aspect of Japanese culture. Cultural assimilation could include adoption of Japanese mannerisms, style of clothing, taste in entertainment, and sometimes aspects of Japanese language.

In expats this process often occurs because of a feeling of isolation or desire to conform, whereas outside Japan it may occur because of an especially strong interest in some kind of fan culture based in Japan, e.g. anime, manga, television dramas, music or lolita fashion.


Japanophilia is the appreciation and love of Japanese culture, people and history. In Japanese, the term for Japanophile is "shinnichi" (親日), with "親" "shin" (しん) equivalent to the English prefix 'pro-' and "日" "nichi" (にち), meaning "Japanese" (as in the word for Japan "Nihon" (日本)). The term was first used as early as the 18th century, switching in scope over time.

Kebede Michael

Kebede Michael (Amharic: ከበደ ሚካኤል; Käbbädä Mikaʾél; November 2, 1916 – November 12, 1998) is an Ethiopian-born author of both fiction and non-fiction literature. He is widely regarded as one of the most prolific and versatile intellectuals of modern Ethiopia – he was a poet, playwright, essayist, translator, historian, novelist, philosopher, journalist, and government officer. He has produced about ninety published works in several languages, some of which have been translated into foreign languages, and have greatly influenced twentieth-century Ethiopian literature and intellectual thought. He has received ample recognition domestically and internationally, including an Honorary Doctorate from Addis Ababa University. He is well known as one of the mid-twentieth-century Japanizing Ethiopian intellectuals.

King Caesar

King Caesar (キングシーサー, Kingu Shīsā) is a kaiju who first appeared in Toho's 1974 film Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla. In his first film appearance, King Caesar is portrayed as a guardian deity and the protector of an ancient Japanese family. Awakened from a dormant state, King Caesar joins forces with Godzilla to vanquish Mechagodzilla.

Korea under Japanese rule

Japanese Korea (Japanese: 大日本帝國 (朝鮮), Dai Nippon Teikoku (Chōsen)) was the period of Korea under Japanese rule between 1910 and 1945.

Joseon Korea came under the Japanese sphere of influence in the Japan–Korea Treaty of 1876 and a complex coalition of the Meiji government, military, and business officials began a process of Korea's political and economic integration into Japan. The Korean Empire became a protectorate of Japan in 1905 in the Japan–Korea Treaty of 1905 and the country was indirectly ruled by the Japanese through the Resident-General of Korea. Japan formally annexed the Korean Empire in 1910 in the Japan–Korea Treaty of 1910, without the consent of Gojong, the regent of the Korean Emperor Sunjong. Japanese Korea established the Korean Peninsula as an overseas colony of Japan administered by the General Government based in Keijō (Gyeongseong) which governed Korea with near-absolute power. Japanese rule prioritized Korea's Japanization, accelerating industrialization started by the Gwangmu Reform, building public works, and fighting the Korean independence movement.Japanese rule over Korea ended in August 1945 upon the Surrender of Japan in World War II and the armed forces of the United States and the Soviet Union occupied the territory. The Division of Korea separated the Korean Peninsula under two governments and economic systems with the northern Soviet Civil Administration and the southern United States Army Military Government in Korea. In 1965, the Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and South Korea declared the unequal treaties between Japan and Korea, especially 1905 and 1910, were "already null and void" at the time of their promulgation. Japanese rule remains controversial in modern-day North Korea and South Korea and its negative repercussions continue to effect these countries, including the industrialization plan to solely benefit Japan, the exploitation of Korean people, the marginalization of Korean history and culture, the environmental exploitation of the Korean Peninsula, and the status of Chinilpa.

Korean Language Society

Korean Language Society is a society of hangul and Korean language research, founded in 1908 by Kim Jeongjin.

Hangul Day was founded in 1926 during the Japanese occupation by members of the Korean Language Society, whose goal was to preserve the Korean language during a time of rapid forced Japanization.It established a Korean orthography (한글 맞춤법 통일안) in 1933.

Nan'yō Shrine

Nanyo Shrine (南洋神社, Nan'yō-jinja) is a Shinto shrine located on the island of Koror, in Palau. The shrine was the ichinomiya of the government of the South Pacific Mandate, a League of Nations mandated territory administered by the Empire of Japan. It was established in 1940 and designated for the veneration of Amaterasu Omikami.


Saikyoyaki (Japanese: 西京焼き) is a method of preparing fish in traditional Japanese cuisine by first marinating fish slices overnight in a white miso paste from Kyoto called saikyo shiro miso (西京白味噌). This dish is a speciality of Kyoto and the local white miso used for the marinade is sweeter then other varieties. Secondary ingredients of the marinade include sake and mirin.This method of marinating fish in miso paste was used in Japan to preserve fish in times before refrigeration and continues to be consumed in the present day for the rich flavor miso adds to the dish. Spanish mackerel (鰆) is a typical fish that is prepared in the saikyoyaki style (called sawara no saikyoyaki. Salmon, tachiuo (太刀魚) and gindara (銀鱈) fish can also be used.

Seizō Kobayashi

Seizō Kobayashi (Japanese: 小林躋造, October 1, 1877 – July 4, 1962) was a Japanese naval commander, commander of the Combined Fleet of the Imperial Japanese Navy (1931–1933) and the 17th Governor-General of Taiwan (1936–1940).

Sesame Street (Japan)

Disambiguation: There was also a Sesame Street (manga) published from 1990 to 1992 unrelated to this.The American children's television series Sesame Street (Japanese: セサミストリート, Hepburn: Sesamisutorīto) has a long history in Japan, airing for three decades as a dubbed program, and recently restarting as a local co-production.

Shō Nei

Shō Nei (尚寧, 1564–1620) was king of the Ryukyu Kingdom from 1587–1620. He reigned during the 1609 invasion of Ryukyu and was the first king of Ryukyu to be a vassal to the Shimazu clan of Satsuma, a Japanese feudal domain.

Shō Nei was the great-grandson of Shō Shin (尚真, r. 1477–1526) and the adopted son-in-law of Shō Ei (尚永, r. 1573–1586).

Taitung Chinese Association

The Taitung Chinese Association (Chinese: 中華會館臺東分社會; pinyin: Zhōnghuá Huìguǎn Táidōng Fēn Shèhuì) is an assembly hall in Taitung City, Taitung County, Taiwan.

Taiwan under Japanese rule

Japanese Taiwan (Japanese: 大日本帝國臺灣, Dai-Nippon Teikoku Taiwan) was the period of Taiwan and the Penghu Islands under Japanese rule between 1895 and 1945.

Taiwan became a dependency of Japan in 1895 when the Qing dynasty of China ceded Taiwan Province in the Treaty of Shimonoseki after Japanese victory in the First Sino-Japanese War. The short-lived Republic of Formosa resistance movement was suppressed by Japanese troops and quickly defeated in the Capitulation of Tainan, ending organized resistance to Japanese occupation and inaugurated five decades of Japanese rule. Taiwan was Japan's first overseas colony and can be viewed as the first steps in implementing their "Southern Expansion Doctrine" of the late 19th century. Japanese intentions were to turn Taiwan into a showpiece "model colony" with much effort made to improve the island's economy, public works, industry, cultural Japanization, and to support the necessities of Japanese military aggression in the Asia-Pacific.Japanese rule of Taiwan ended after the surrender of Japan concluded World War II in August 1945, and the territory was placed under the control of the Republic of China (ROC) with the issuing of General Order No. 1. Japan formally renounced rights to Taiwan in the Treaty of San Francisco in April 1952. The experience of Japanese rule, ROC rule and the February 28 massacre of 1947 continues to affect issues such as Taiwan Retrocession Day, national identity, ethnic identity, and the formal Taiwan independence movement.

The Japanese and Europe

The Japanese and Europe: Economic and Cultural Encounters is a 1996 book by Marie Conte-Helm, published by Athlone Press. The book discusses Japanese investment and settlement in Europe, which began in the 1980s. Conte-Helm was a reader of Japanese studies at the University of Northumbria. The book's intended audience included both Japanese and Western persons.The first two chapters discuss the history of Europe-Japan encounters. The first chapter discusses overall history that began in the 1540s, when the Portuguese encountered the Japanese, while the second chapter discusses Japan-European Community relations. The next two chapters discuss the Japanese expatriate communities that formed in Europe. There are separate sections per European country, with one section each discussing the Japanese in Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom. The last chapter, titled "Japanization of Europe: Raw Fish, Wrestling, and 'Just-in-Time'," discusses the effects of Japanese expatriates on European society. Mairi MacLean of Royal Holloway, University of London wrote that the book included "something of a 'survival guide'" for Japanese persons by describing facilities in Europe catering to Japanese.Several Japanese employees in Europe gave interviews that were used in the making of the book. There are 28 pages of photographs and illustrations, including advertisements, charts, maps, and newspaper articles. Ian Nish, who wrote a book review for Asian Affairs, praised them, saying they were "well-chosen".


The Wagokuhen or Wagyokuhen (倭玉篇, "Japanese Yupian") was a circa 1489 CE Japanese dictionary of Chinese characters. This early Muromachi period Japanization was based upon the circa 543 CE Chinese Yupian (玉篇 "Jade Chapters"), as available in the 1013 CE Daguang yihui Yupian (大廣益會玉篇; "Enlarged and Expanded Yupian"). The date and compiler of the Wagokuhen are uncertain. Since the oldest extant editions of 1489 and 1491 CE are from the Entoku era, that may approximate the time of original compilation. The title was later written 和玉篇 with the graphic variant wa 和 "harmony; Japan" for wa 倭 "dwarf; Japan".

Internal collation is through Chinese character radicals. Each head kanji entry gives katakana annotations for readings in on'yomi Sino-Japanese to the right and native kun'yomi Japanese below the character. There are few definitions and no entries for compounds. This format is similar with the Jikyōshū, except that the Wagokuhen does not semantically subdivide characters within a radical division.

The Wagokuhen was frequently revised and reprinted, for example, the Shūchin Wagokuhen (袖珍倭玉篇 "Pocket Edition Wagokuhen"). Scholars categorize over 51 editions (Chen 1996:281) by the number and arrangement of radicals. While the Yupian has a system of 542 radicals, different Wagokuhen editions have from 100 to 542. Bailey (1960:31) notes that the textual variations are usually divided into four types, depending upon the sequence of the first four radicals in the edition.

Type 1: Those beginning with the radicals 日 (sun), 月 (moon), 肉 (flesh), 人 (person)

Type 2: Those beginning with the radicals 金 (gold), 人 (person), 言 (speech), 心 (heart)

Type 3: Those beginning with the radicals 一 (one), 上 (above), 示 (point), 二 (two)

Type 4: Those beginning with the radicals 示 (point), 玉 (gem), 土 (earth), 田 (field)The evidence shows that Type 1 was closest to the original Yupian, Type 2 was influenced by the Liao dynasty dictionary Longkan shoujian 龍龕手鑑 ("Hand Mirror for the Dragon Niche") with 242 radicals, Type 3 was by the expanded Daguang yihui Yupian, and Type 4 was also influenced by the Daguang and the Japanese Jikyōshū. The Wagokuhen was popular until the Edo period when Japanese dictionaries began to include compounds as well as individual characters.

Standard Mandarin
Hanyu Pinyinhuángmínhuà yùndòng
Bopomofoㄏㄨㄤˊㄇㄧㄣˊㄏㄨㄚˋ ㄩㄣˋㄉㄨㄥˋ
Romanizationwaonminho yiuindon
Yue: Cantonese
Jyutpingwong4 man4 faa3 wan6 dung6
Southern Min
Hokkien POJhông-bîn-huà ūn-tōng
Standard Mandarin
Hanyu Pinyinrìběnhuà yùndòng
Bopomofoㄖˋㄅㄣˇㄏㄨㄚˋ ㄩㄣˋㄉㄨㄥˋ
Revised Romanizationhwangminhwa jeongchaek
hwangminhwa undong (alt.)
McCune–Reischauerhwangminhwa chŏngch'aek
hwangminhwa untong (alt.)
Romanizationkōmin kakyōiku
kōmin kaseisaku (alt.)
Opposite trends
Related concepts

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