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Modernity in East Asia: Globalization and Japanese Colonialism

This panel discusses the relationship of globalization and Japanese colonialism from the late nineteenth century to the first half of the twentieth century. As the main force of globalization in East Asia, the Japanese Empire transformed the traditional socio-economic systems of mainland Japan and its colonies, Taiwan and Korea, on the basis of the programs of self-transformation and modernization of the Meiji Restoration. Japanese colonialism had a profound impact on the modernization of Taiwan, South Korea and Japan itself.
“Globalization” refers to the process of international integration consequent on the exchange of world outlooks, products, concepts and other cultural elements. Scholars have generally argued that globalization was already underway in the sixteenth century, but large-scale globalization in its modern sense began in the early nineteenth century due to the expansion of global trade and imperialism after the industrial revolution in the West. However, it must be noted that although Taiwan and South Korea were forced by Western imperialism to open ports in the late nineteenth century, what mainly affected the globalization and modernization of these two regions was Japanese imperialism, which inherited and imitated Western imperialism and carried out colonial actions in East Asia.
Previously, scholarship has only rarely explored the establishment of the modern economic systems of the colonies under Japanese imperialism in terms of globalization and modernization. At the same time, the similarities and differences in how Japanese colonialism influenced the construction of modern economies in Taiwan and Korea remain relatively understudied from a comparative perspective.
This panel brings together scholars from different methodological backgrounds who provide a comparative perspective and extensively employ digital resources. The papers put emphasis on the formation of modern economic institutions and practices. These include Customs, financial reform, modern transport systems, statistical investigation, shipping infrastructure, migration policy and stock fluctuations in Taiwan, Korea and mainland Japan during the Japanese colonial period.

Organizer(s)

  • Yu-ju Lin Academia Sinica linyuju@gate.sinica.edu.tw Taiwan
  • Wen-kai Lin Academia Sinica wklin@gate.sinica.edu.tw Taiwan

Session members

  • Lung-Pao Tsai, National Taipei University
  • Chia-Hao Chen, National Chengchi University
  • Pei-hsin Lin, National Taiwan Normal University
  • Myung-ki Moon, Kookmin University
  • Teruhiro Minato, Rikkyo University
  • Elijah J. Greenstein, Princeton University

Discussant(s)

  • Tsong-min Wu National Taiwan University ntut019@ntu.edu.tw

Papers

Panel abstract

This panel discusses the relationship of globalization and Japanese colonialism from the late nineteenth century to the first half of the twentieth century. As the main force of globalization in East Asia, the Japanese Empire transformed the traditional socio-economic systems of mainland Japan and its colonies, Taiwan and Korea, on the basis of the programs of self-transformation and modernization of the Meiji Restoration. Japanese colonialism had a profound impact on the modernization of Taiwan, South Korea and Japan itself. This panel brings together scholars from different methodological backgrounds who provide a comparative perspective and extensively employ digital resources. The papers put emphasis on the formation of modern economic institutions and practices. These include Customs, financial reform, modern transport systems, statistical investigation, shipping infrastructure, migration policy and stock fluctuations in Taiwan, Korea and mainland Japan during the Japanese colonial period.

1st half

The Continuity and Breakdown of the Customs of Taiwan during the Japanese Occupation

Yu-ju Lin

The change in the Taiwan’s Customs system illustrates the continuity and breakdown of the governing mechanism under the rise and fall of regimes. This paper explores the formation of the Japanese customs from the end of the shogunate to the Meiji Restoration, how it was transplanted to Taiwan, and the nature and significance of that transformation.

The change in the Taiwan’s Customs system illustrates the continuity and breakdown of the governing mechanism under the rise and fall of regimes. This paper explores the formation of the Japanese customs from the end of the shogunate to the Meiji Restoration, how it was transplanted to Taiwan, and the nature and significance of that transformation.

Transformation of Taiwan's Financial System:The Historical Significance of Gotō Shinpei's Fiscal Reform in the Early Japanese Colonial Period _1898-1905_

Wen-kai Lin

The paper will discuss Japanese fiscal reform in Taiwan Government-General during the early colonial period, analyzing Gotō Shinpei’s changes to land tax reform, customs/tariff and commodity taxes, as to the monopoly system on opium/camphor/salt. Meanwhile, in order to clarify the characteristics of these changes in terms of Taiwan’¬s long term financial history, we will compare it from qualitative institutional aspect and quantitative statistical aspect, with similar reforms made by Liu Ming-chuan during the late Qing Dynasty, to gauge the historical significance of Gotō Shinpei’s fiscal reform. The paper discovers that Liu Ming-chuan’s reform was largely dependent on patrimonial bureaucarcy and traditional governmentality, therefore failing to defeat organizational rent-seeking, corruption and inefficiency, and resulted in limited fiscal profit from the fiscal changes. In contrast, Gotō Shinpei’s reform was mostly implemented through rational bureaucracy and modern governmentality, thus succeeded in overcoming organizational corruption and inefficiency, increased significantly the efficiency of tax revenue.

The paper will discuss Japanese fiscal reform in Taiwan Government-General during the early colonial period, analyzing Gotō Shinpei’s changes to land tax reform, customs/tariff and commodity taxes, as to the monopoly system on opium/camphor/salt. Meanwhile, in order to clarify the characteristics of these changes in terms of Taiwan’¬s long term financial history, we will compare it from qualitative institutional aspect and quantitative statistical aspect, with similar reforms made by Liu Ming-chuan during the late Qing Dynasty, to gauge the historical significance of Gotō Shinpei’s fiscal reform. The paper discovers that Liu Ming-chuan’s reform was largely dependent on patrimonial bureaucarcy and traditional governmentality, therefore failing to defeat organizational rent-seeking, corruption and inefficiency, and resulted in limited fiscal profit from the fiscal changes. In contrast, Gotō Shinpei’s reform was mostly implemented through rational bureaucracy and modern governmentality, thus succeeded in overcoming organizational corruption and inefficiency, increased significantly the efficiency of tax revenue.

The Building of a Modern Transport System and Economic Growth in Taiwan: Focusing on Grain Transport(1899-1918)

Chia-Hao Chen, Tsai Lung-Pao

The Establishment of an Official Statistical System in Taiwan under Japanese Colonial Rule

Pei-Hsin Lin

2nd half

Different Migration Patterns between Taiwanese and Koreans Under Japanese Colonialism

Myung-ki Moon

Elijah J. Greenstein 2018 Shipping Lines in the Japanese Empire, 1918–1941

Elijah J. Greenstein

Price Fluctuaitions of Japanese Foreigin Currency Bonds in the NYSE during the 1930s

Teruhiro Minato