Japanese nationalism and geographical thought

Akihiko Takagi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


There has been simultaneous emergence in many countries of the world of political disputes over aspects of national history in the 1990s. Geographical knowledge has political implications. Hence it is concerned with the formation of national identity as well as historical knowledge. This paper examines the relationships between Japanese modernisation and geographical thought, the characteristics of school textbooks and geopolitics in Japan during the Asia Pacific War, and recent disputes about views of history and the meaning of views of geography in the post-Cold War era. Consequently, it is shown that the view of geography promoted the formation of national identity in the same way as that of history through geographical education and geopolitics. Taking the roles of geography into consideration, it can be said that an imaginative geography based on an ethnocentric view plays an important role in the time of rethinking national history. We should be aware of such an ethnocentric view of geography and make an effort to overcome differences in views between nations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-139
Number of pages15
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Political Science and International Relations


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