“Ancient Japan, Archaeology for State Formative Processes” by Tetsuo Hishida
Book review by Hiroyuki Kaneko
This book is on archaeological study of the state formation history of ancient Japan. It criticizes the historians’ past state formative history, which starts with the Ritsuryo nation in the latter half of the 7th century. It instead proposes that an early nation state was already formed in Japan in the latter half of the 5th century, which developed and evolved into the Ritsuryo nation.
Although it was somewhat unsatisfactory that it did not point out that the formation of the Ritsuryo nation resulted from an East Asian upheaval that began with the formation of the Sui and Tang dynasties, this book consisted mainly of a narration of silent archaeological data, with added historical documents and accounts from Chinese history books. The process of making archaeological data historical data, various procedures, and demonstration are minute, and the conclusion is generally appropriate. The future of nation state formative history will progress based on the framework indicated in this book.
Source: NIHON KÔKOGAKU, May 20, 2008; 117p., ISSN 1340-8488, ISBN 978-4-642-09100-8