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Douglas Howland, "Japanese Sovereignty, Meiji State Practices, and International Law"

Event Type
Center for East Asian and Pacific Studies (CEAPS), the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, and the Women and Gender in Global Perspectives Program
Lucy Ellis Lounge, 1080 Foreign Languages Building (1st floor), 707 S. Mathews Ave., Urbana
Sep 15, 2017   12:00 - 1:30 pm  
Douglas Howland, David D. Buck Professor of Chinese History, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
Free and open to the public.
Originating Calendar
School of Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics Calendar

Abstract: Meiji Japan is an excellent lens through which to view the emergence of a global order in the 19th century and to examine the assertion of sovereignty in it. While other scholars present the case of Japan in terms of “the expansion of international society,” this talk will argue that Japan helps to demonstrate how international society was constructed. It was not that international society expanded and that Japan became a member; rather, as Japan asserted its sovereignty, it proactively joined the ranks of the great powers who defined and dominated international society. Central to this process was Japan’s engagement with the multiple legal grounds of the 19th-century state: natural law, treaty law, international administrative law, and the laws of war.

Bio: Prof. Douglas Howland is the David D. Buck Professor of Chinese History at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. His research interests include westernization in East Asia; international law and state sovereignty in China and Japan; liberalism and popular sovereignty in the 19th century. He received a PhD from the University of Chicago in 1989.

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