The purpose of this article is to contribute several interpretations and themes which have not figured prominently in the past studies of history of sociology in Japan before the War. The problematical focus is placed on the fundamentally important theoretical content of the pre-war sociology-in the more technical sense of the term “theretical”. Nor does this article include any systematic consideration of every social theories on and contributions to the philosophy and methodology of sociological science. It is perhaps particularly important in this connection to emphasize two points. The first of these is that our sociological interest in the pre-war conflict between the Emperoristic fascism and the mass democracy including the Marxistic and liberalistic movements that were suppressed by the Public Peace Regulation (named “Chian Ijiho”). Secondly, with respect to “Sociology of War” which has been almost wholly neglected by sociologists in Japan. Democratic social theories had been suppressed under the pressure of the ultra-nationalistic extremism. Empirically the relations between wars and sociology are clearly of the highest complexity and involve much interpenetration. Two of them refer to the plan of this article that selects from various theories those which best illustrate the contribution the sociologist made to make the scientific sociology as a specific social science. The task of today sociologist is to classify the sociological requisites of democracy in Japan. In the pre-war period, the Japanese sociologists couldn't discuss these points thoroughly under the pressure of military fascism and the nationalistic intellectual heritage imposed on them. This problem leads us to a severe investigation of the nature of trends of sociological sciences in the pre-war Japan. In order to make same important consideration to this task, this article attempts to relate Takata Yasuma (1883-1972) and his work to the main currents of the intellectual history of his time named “the Taisho Democracy.”
Scientific studies of families in Japan began with “Family Composition” by prof. Teizo Toda in 1937. He made clear that the Japanese family is composed mainly of a married man and woman with their children, although in individual cases one or more additional persons may reside with them through the statistical analysis of the National Census in 1920. Thereafter, some followed Toda and other criticized him, through which the sociology of the family in Japan developed rapidly. Prof. Takashi Koyama adopted Toda's scientific method and applied it to the analysis of large families at the remote mountain villages in the “Hokuriku” districts. Prof. Eizaburo Suzuki criticized Toda's definition of the family as a group and insisted that the Japanese family, “ie” have to be analyzed as an institution. He explained the Japanese family through the “ie” norm and status system. Prof. Kizaemon Ariga commented Toda's small family theory on the viewpoint of functionalism and pointed out that Toda should not exclude non-kin members from the family, analyzing the family in connection with “dozoku”. However, at first he included the “dozoku” with the large family into the same category of the large family form. Prof. Hiroshi Oikawa pointed out the mistake of Ariga at this point because the branch family is an independent family separated from the stem family and cast a light on the importance of the “dozoku” in the bilateral kinship system through the analysis of the living customs of both marriage and funeral. Prof. Seiichi Kitano was the first designator of the “dozoku” and cleared up the difference of the “dozoku” from the patron-client relationship, while Ariga categorized them into the same category. Sociological studies of the Chinese family developed well, too during the same time. Prof. Tatsumi Makino made clear the continual existence of the small family in the Chinese history, while Prof. Morimitsu Shimizu pointed out the reduction of the large family and increase of the small family through the introduction of stratification.
From 1920's to early 1940's Japanese rural sociology were gradually coming into existence as special sociology with two systematic theories. The two theories were Eitarô Suzuki's 'Shizenson' theory and Kizaemon Ariga's 'Ie-rengo' theory which was mainly researching on 'Dozoku' group. This paper is to discuss how the two theories were influenced in the formative process by agricultural policy, folklore, and American rural sociology, and it is also to deal with what characteristics they came to possess as a result of the influence. Summing up, Suzuki and Ariga were alike in trying to investigate the structure of Japanese rural society with the key concepts of their own inventions. While Suzuki's 'shizenson' theory, whose method accepted the influence of American rural sociology, was chiefly founded on the facts in the rural society in the southwestern part of Japan, on the other hand Ariga's'Ie-rengo' theory, under the enormous influence of folklore, was based upon the study of 'Dozoku' group which had often been observed in the rural society in the northeastern part of Japan, and it was the theory generalizing the hierarchal pattern in social relation, admitting that it was true of the social character of Japanese people.
Urban sociology is a science which surveys everyday life in urban areas and neighboring districts. One may say that in Japan there has been no tradition of sociological studies on urban life or society. Somewhat we cannot but agree to this idea, yet there has been not a little remarkable works in this field and some of which was published in pre-wartime. Although from the sociological point of view there were scarcely proper studies on urban phenomena in pre-wartime, we must remember that Fukutaro Okui's “Essays on Contemporary Metropolitan Cities” was published in 1940 and this work was first intensive sociological study of urban society and of urban way of life. Generally speaking Okui's early works may be called studies on social problems and social thought. The sources and spirit of his sociological studies on urban life may be resumed as follows : (1) John Ruskin's spirit, (2) Forms and spirit of European medieval cities, (3) theory and method of urban studies in America, (4) sociological and ecological researches into Tokyo and Kamakura, (5) urban life sketched out in Japanese novels and essays, and (6) his own everydays experience. Now urban studies in pre-wartime may be classified into next five streams : (1) essays on urban or rural-urban problems, (2) on social problems and social work, (3) on municipal government, (4) on urban population, and (5) on town planning. Tracing these various streams, much of these are mainly characterized by demographic or statistical approach and also by orientation toward (rural-) urban or social problems. Through these theoretical or empirical surveys of urban phenomena, not only various phases of everyday life but also structure of urban social world were clearly clarified. Urban studies in pre-wartime are primitive in its method and can be regarded as proto-type of sociological study of urban society, but today we must pay attention to these works because of its some viewpoint, perspectives, and problem-solving approaches.
It is commonly accepted that sociology of labour and industry in Japan had begun by Kunio Odaka on his study about professional sociology (1941). But sociology of labour and industry has been grown with the development of capitalism, and sprouted through the solution of social problems. From such a point of view, some surveys of Gennosuke Yokoyama which had done at the period of industrial revolution in Japan, have been renewed understanding recently. And it is more remarkable that after Yokoyama some interesting surveys had done. First, we must refer to the social surveys of labour problems by Osaka City at 1919-1926. Next, “San Gyo Rodo Chosajyo” attempted surveys from stand point of Marxism at 1929-1933. These surveys made clear the conditions of labourer at the period of monopolistic capitalism in Japan. We can find out positive basis of sociology of labour in them. In the same time, Keizo Fujibayashi constructed the method of labour surveys as a psychology of labourer. Emphasizing necessity of social surveys to inquire into the psychology of labourer, he insisted on the sociology of labour in quality. He could not make practical survey, but he would consistently criticize the capitalistic rationalization of industry. Comparing with him, Odaka's conception is less important, because his professional sociology is too moralistic to analyze the whole process of living about labourer. We must notice that Shizuo Matsushima, he had been led the sociology of labour and industry in post-war Japan, was influenced by Fujibayashi than Odaka.
This paper attempts to examine the results of the theoretical and empirical studies in the the branch of the so-called “Social psychology : ideology” of Japanese sociology before 1945. This branch has many sides to its character. Accordingly it is very important to clarify the position of the branch in sociology for the time. It is reasonable that the branch has been called variously so far in Japanese sociology. Because the problems taken up in this field are extremely complex. Furthermore, some of them have ever been regarded as the key problems of the sociological theories. Then I aim at seizing the outline of the theoretical and empirical studies in the field, first of all. Most of these studies might as well have been of social consciousness by and large. For instance, even the point on which J. Matsumoto and M. Shimmei disputed for a long time was not inrelated to the subject of social consciousness. On the other hand, this subject was substantially discussed also in the many branches of Japanese sociology. Its typical example was found in the case of Japanese rural sociology. At all events, why the so-called “Social psychology ideology” field is one of the branches of sociology ? The theme of my paper is rooted in this question.