The Sociology of Law
Online ISSN : 2424-1423
Print ISSN : 0437-6161
ISSN-L : 0437-6161
On Japanese "Sei-i" as a Sense of Social Norm
Isamu Yoshida
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1996 Volume 1996 Issue 48 Pages 199-203,244


In Japan, the frequent use of word "Sei-i" is observed in the process of negotiations and dispute resolutions. The essential core of "Sei-i" originated in the Japanese confucianism of the Tokugawa period. Since then, it has been gradually transformed into a complex of traditional, modern and contemporary types of "Sei-i". Therefore, Japanese "Sei-i" has various meanings today.
Careful observation indicates that sometimes a sence of "Sei-i" gives normative influence on human relations, though it often plays only an emotional role. In that case, the word "Sei-i" is used to express a normative sense which people have in mind, especially when the injured party negotiates with the injurer for apology and compensation. And it is worth notice that both persons think highly of "Sei-i", but they often understand the same contents of it quite differently.
A few scholars have already studied some aspects of "Sei-i", but they don't focus their concerns upon its normative sense. This paper deals with its normative sense in the process of negotiations and disputes between the injured party and the injurer.
The main purpose of this paper is to construct theoretical model of normative contents and social functions of "Sei-i". Normative contents of "Sei-i" are classified into procedural contents and substantive ones, and both contents are constructed as a set of normative rules.
This paper is the first step to the heuristic study of "Sei-i" as a sense of social norm.

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