The Rise and Fall of Japanology: Recollections of Ronald Dore

Ezra F. Vogel’s Japan as Number One augured the high tide of Japan and Japanology. Subtitled “Lessons for America,” the 1979 book preceded the property and share price bubble of the 1980s that seemed to make Japan the largest and most dynamic economy in the world. Vogel’s conspectus of Japanese society delineated a well-functioning, nearly ideal society: excellent schools, good labor relations, capable bureaucrats, and much more. Indeed, many American business people and policymakers heeded “lessons” from Japan, whether the idea of kaizen [improvement] or industrial policy. American students flocked to Japanese language classes; the future of Japan Studies appeared rosy indeed. Vogel’s book tickled Japanese national pride and went on to sell over 700,000 copies, making it the bestselling social science book of all time in Japan...

The Rise and Fall of Japanology: Recollections of Ronald Dore

Ronald P. Dore. Genmetsu [Disillusionment]. Tokyo: Fujiwara Shoten, 2014. ISBN: 978–4865780000.

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