By Kären Wigen
K?ren Wigen probes local cartography, choerography, and statecraft to redefine recovery (ishin) in sleek jap heritage. As constructed the following, that time period designates no longer the short coup d'?tat of 1868 yet a three-centuries-long venture of rehabilitating an old map for contemporary reasons. Drawing on a variety of geographical files from Shinano (present-day Nagano Prefecture), Wigen argues that either the founding father of the Tokugawa Shogunate (1600-1868) and the reformers of the Meiji period (1868-1912) recruited the classical map to serve the reason for administrative reform. Nor have been they by myself; provincial males of letters performed an both serious function in bringing imperial geography again to lifestyles within the geographical region. to confirm those claims, Wigen strains the continued profession of the classical court's most vital unit of governance--the province--in principal Honshu.
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Additional info for A Malleable Map: Geographies of Restoration in Central Japan, 1600-1912 (Asia: Local Studies Global Themes)
38 a province defined Map 7. Dai Nihon koku no zu (Map of Great Japan), late Edo era. 2 cm. Courtesy of the Gifu Prefectural Library, Gifu. In the FusOkoku no zu (Plate 2), the old conventions are equally apparent, albeit in a diªerent idiom. Here, too, Yamashiro is positioned precisely in the middle of the nation, Edo is a distant outlier, and the road system shown is the old Kyoto-centric one. 19 In this antiquated image, Shinano remains a gateway to the east. Similar maps continued to be published throughout the eighteenth and into the nineteenth centuries, although most eventually dropped the ancient road network.
A vast variety of subjects could be accommodated (since virtually anything could potentially be mapped, measured, or described), and their flexible formats could be condensed or ex16 introduction panded at will. Finally, the documents considered here were fundamentally instrumental, meant not to be contemplated but to be used. Most were physically portable, the better to be carried and consulted in the field. But even those that were unwieldy or fragile, like the shogun’s room-sized picture maps of the provinces (kuniezu), operated less as decorative objects than as reference works.
The resulting geography was in some ways more byzantine than the one it replaced, with overlapping jurisdictions that were subject to rapid and repeated readjustments. But presiding over all of these specialized districts on behalf of Tokyo was a much more stable set of topdown administrative units: the regional entities known in Japanese as ken (prefectures) and their constituent gun (districts or counties). Both terms had classical referents. As a prefecture was a unit of Roman rule, so ken and gun were units of Tang administration.
A Malleable Map: Geographies of Restoration in Central Japan, 1600-1912 (Asia: Local Studies Global Themes) by Kären Wigen