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Week 5 Reading – Transplantation Of The European Factory System And Adaptations In Japan Notes

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EH207: Topic 5 - Reading - Transplantation of the European Factory System and Adaptations in Japan: The Experience of the Tomioka Model Filature - Kiyokawa

Topic 5 - Reading - Transplantation of the European Factory System and Adaptations in Japan: The Experience of the Tomioka Model Filature - Kiyokawa The Significance of a Government Model Factory: Our Problem

Was the first real steam filature in Japan - 1872 Government controlled training factory Designed to improve quality of Japanese raw silk o As it was the most important export in the early Meiji period Faced difficulties in producing Western construction materials o Indigenous techniques and raw materials Meiji government had only recently (a few years back), adopted the open-door policy o Began to promote industrialization
 Actively introducing Western culture and technology o But anti-alienism was still widespread
 Based on ideas from the previous Tokugawa Rule
 "blood-wine" rumour When it finally opened, the number of applicants was surprisingly small (because of the anti-alienism) The transfer of technology was not the most significant feature o Transplant of a completely new Western production system was more important
 i.e. the factory system Tomioka filature focused "quality-first" principle There already existed a few Western-style filatures o "domestic filatures" o But were based on viewpoint of cheaper and easier transfers of Western technology
 Adaptation rather than adoption Tomioka filature introduced a Western factory management system to Japan o Sunday holidays
 Unknown in Japanese society due to reliance on lunar calendar and lack of Christianity
 These regular holidays led to high-absentee rate, loitering and tardiness
 Government introduced Sunday system into public schools and offices in 1876
 Took until 1940s to penetrate factories and society o 8 hour days

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