The purpose of this article is to clarify the impact of World War I on the Japanese maritime shipping industry in terms of the political process. The research to date on that industry during the Taisho era has been conducted mainly within the framework of economic and business history, while aspects such as shipping as a state enterprise and the politics of shipping policy-making have yet to be discussed. Therefore, the author of the present article has chosen to discuss the conflict and cooperation that existed among the government, the political parties and ship owners through an examination of how the October 1917 Emergency Imperial Order for a Wartime Shipping Regulation Ordinance (Senji Senpaku Kanrirei 戦時船舶管理令) was drafted, deliberated and enacted in order to prevent the flight of merchant vessel tonnage abroad.
During the decade of the 1910’s, which was marked by a fledgling attempt by political parties to build constituencies through paying greater attention to regional interests, the Osaka-Kobe (Hanshin) region, the center of the shipping industry at that time, was still a political no man’s land. The Ordinance, which limited the industry from freely doing business in the world market, gave rise to grievance petition movements and bitter criticism of the government by carriers, especially smaller, non-scheduled (shagai 社外) ship owners in the region, all of whom also approached the political parties in order to ease the enactment of the Ordinance. On the other hand, the political parties which took an anti-government stance on the issue welcomed the contributions and support of the ship owners by organizing large party conventions in the region. For example, in its direct dealings with the ship owners, the Seiyukai 政友会 Party moved to obtain a verbal commitment from the Minister of Communications Den Kenjiro concerning the issue of easing regulations.
During the Ordinance’s drafting stages, there was a plan to arbitrarily take over the leadership of the shipping industry administratively by members of the so-called “bureaucrat faction”, including Den and Foreign Diplomacy Commission member Ito Miyoji.
However, in the attempts to obtain ex post facto ratification of the Ordinance during the 40th session of the Imperial Diet, by prior arrangements made by the majority Seiyukai Party, the Ministry of Communications clearly stated in the deliberations that it would ease enactment, thus gutting the Ordinance for all intents and purposes. That is to say, third-country shipping eastward of the Suez Canal, which the Ordinance prohibited, was in effect put on a notification basis, which in fact accelerated the advance of Japanese vessels into India, the South Seas and Australia.
The author concludes that the association between the Kobe-Osaka region ship owners and the Seiyukai, and their resulting intervention in the enactment of the Ordinance, not only frustrated the government's administrative plan, but was also the determining factor in the expansion of maritime routes for Japan’s shipping industry toward the end of the First World War.
The present article attempts to clarify one aspect of the Song Dynasty's reconceptualization of the idea of “the World” (Tianxia 天下) by paying special attention to the title of provincial governor (jiedushi 節度使) and the aristocratic status conferred on foreign heads of state under China's vassalage (cefeng 冊封) system, while focusing on the continuity that existed from the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms through the Song Dynasty period.
In concrete terms, the author begins with a discussion of the jiedushi titles by identifying the entities granted such governor-ships, then examining the administrative structure which the Song Dynasty imagined was being implemented by those entities in the territories they ruled. The author then turns to an investigation of provincial governors on Song China’s periphery, with reference to the related discussion that developed in the field of Vietnamese history since the 1970s. He finds that the entities granted jiedusi by the Song Dynasty were “irredentas” from the Five Dynasties period, which the Song Dynasty could not actually reunify into the Chinese world, meaning that the Song period continued to be an era in the history of China characterized by territorial division among powerful entities, just like during the Five Dynasties period.
Next, the discussion is focussed on the conferment of aristocratic status on the jiedusi in question while referring to recent research on the Chinese world order, in order to examine the question of how the Song Dynasty reconciled the actual decentralization of the real situation with its ideally conceived “World”. The author finds that the Song Dynasty adopted the world order imagined by the political regimes in central China during the Five Dynasties period as containing “irredentas” (viz. the jiedushi lords) in an attempt to reconstruct its own ideal conception of “the World”.
Finally, the author points out that not only was this conceptual reconstruction of ideological importance to the Song Dynasty, but for the jiedushi grantees themselves, as well, it was significant as a shared conception that helped secure their political and economic bases within their own territories.
The author concludes that 1) the Song Dynasty was a “semi-unified dynasty” in the sense that it was incapable of actually re-integrating the divisive, decentralized conditions existing since the beginning of the Five Dynasties period and 2) given such conditions, it became a “virtually unified dynasty” by incorporating such entities as Xixia, Daliguo (Yunnan) and Southeast Asia within the context of reconstructed ideals about the nature of “the World”.
This article attempts to reconstruct the process by which the Tokugawa Bakufu settled its political affairs through a comprehensive analysis of 1) the petitions submitted to the Bakufu by various feudal lords concerning the kind of accoutrement they would be allowed to carry with them in their processions to Edo and 2) the opinions written by Bakufu officials about whether to accept those petitions, all recorded in Documents of the Yuhitsu Secretariat (Yuhitsu Monjo), and in so doing sheds light on the following points concerning the relationship between the shogunate of Tokugawa Ienari and the daimyo families of the country’s feudal domains.
First, concerning the processing of the petitions, the applications submitted by the feudal lords to the Bakufu elder in charge for the month (Tsukiban Roju 月番老中) would then be handed over to the superintendents of police (Ometsuke 大目付, Metsuke 目付), who would deliberate, write their opinions and send them back to the Tsukiban. What accoutrement processions were allowed to carry was an issue closely related to the status of daimyo families, and regarding the acceptance or rejection of their requests, the Tsukiban and other elders would deliberate and make their final decisions while referring to the opinions of the police superintendents. On these occasions, what was emphasized in the elders’ decisions was the impact that the acceptance of any request would have on other daimyo families, The existence of such standards made is possible for the Bakufu to utilize the carrying of certain accoutrement by the daimyo families as a means to managing family status and the order of procession.
Next, concerning the shogunate of Tokugawa Ienari, the author shows that the daimyo families who held marital ties to the Ienari's sons and daughters had been unfairly promoted in bureaucratic status (kan’i 官位). For example, the Ienari-affiliated Aizu Matsudaira and Nabeshima Families were granted requests which they had been refused in the past and for which no precedents had been newly established. On the other hand, the Todo Family, which had no marital ties to Ienari's siblings, were according to the above standards also granted requests which they had been refused in the past and for which no precedents had been newly established.
Concerning these irregularities, the author concludes the in the background to the acceptance of many petitions to carry accoutrement during the Ienari shogunate lay 1) the acceptance of petitions submitted by Ienari-affiliated daimyo families and the submission of petitions by other, unaffiliated families and 2) in the thinking of the Bakufu officials, beginning with the Council of Elders, the granting of petitions was based on maintaining equilibrium with other daimyo families.