Chapter

A Pan-Provincial Press

Kären Wigen

in A Malleable Map

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2010 | ISBN: 9780520259188
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520945807 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520259188.003.0007
A Pan-Provincial Press

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Periodicals rapidly took root in Japan after they had been introduced to Yokohama in the 1860s. The Japanese-language press took off nationwide even before the fall of the shogunate and dozens of different newspapers and journals appeared in the major ports. The province's first periodical, the Shinpi shinbun (Shinano-Hida News), founded in 1872, was among the earliest newspaper in Japan. The highland region from which it came was a leader in technological innovation. Nagano publishers converted quickly from wood blocks to movable type and carried out some of Japan's most innovative experiments with newspaper illustrations. It is barely surprising to learn that Japan supported an early and vigorous periodical press given Shinano's close cultural ties with the Kanto region. The resulting depiction of geography is turbid and unpredictable; where maps predict a region all at once, and gazetteers span through it in a ritualized order, the newspaper appears to be all over the place.

Keywords: periodicals; Yokohama; shogunate; Nagano; Kanto

Chapter.  11472 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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