By the same authors

Japan's Castles: Citadels of Modernity in War and Peace

Research output: Book/ReportBook



Publication details

DateAccepted/In press - 2019
DatePublished (current) - 2 May 2019
Original languageEnglish
ISBN (Electronic)9781108680578
ISBN (Print)9781108481946


This book is a history of Japan's castles in the modern period from the nineteenth century to the present day. It argues that castles are key sites for understanding continuity and change in modern Japan. In particular, we argue that castles played an important role of the militarization of Japanese society in the decades before the Second World War, and were similarly instrumental in demilitarizing the country in the postwar period. Castles have been used to craft identities, to create and erase memories, and to symbolically join tradition and modernity. As part of this process, from the 1870s onward, Japan's major castles were transformed into army bases that dominated the urban space and created a physical and symbolic link between the modern military and the nation’s premodern martial heritage. After 1945, castle spaces were cleansed of military elements and transformed into public cultural spaces that celebrated both modernity and the pre-imperial past. Other important themes include understandings of heritage and authenticity, tensions between regional and national identities, and the role of civil society in modern Japan.

    Research areas

  • Japan, Castle, Heritage, Modernity, militarization, demilitarization, empire, tradition, ARCHITECTURE, Urban History, Imperial Japanese Army, Occupation of Japan

Discover related content

Find related publications, people, projects, datasets and more using interactive charts.

View graph of relations