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Imagining the Japanese nation : the politics of Mt. Fuji, 1760-1825 Butterlin, Julien F. 2011

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IMAGINING THE JAPANESE NATION: THE POLITICS OF Mt. FUJI, 1760-1825. by Julien F. Butterlin B.A., The University of Hartford, CT. USA, 2006 B.F.A., The University of Hartford, CT. USA, 2006  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Asian Studies) THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver) June 2011 © Julien Butterlin, 2011  Abstract The Edo period (1603-1868) saw the dawn of commercial publishing and the appearance of a Japanese mass market. Amidst these developments, a growing number of intellectuals, from all walks of life, started a cultural and political debate seeking to define the boundaries and center of their nation. A wide variety of schools of thought contributed their particular views to the question but two scholars of Dutch studies, or rangaku, offered one of the most drastic and creative solutions to define “Japaneseness.” The writer-scientist Hiraga Gennai (1728-1779) and the painter-geographer Shiba Kôkan (1747-1818) attempted to articulate Mt. Fuji as the symbol of a culturally and politically integrated Japan through their written and visual works. This thesis attempts to show the various forces contributing to and the process by which these two polymaths came to conceive and then propagate the idea of Mt. Fuji as a national symbol of their country. In order to do so, we will first focus on the life of Hiraga Gennai and the ideas contained in his most famous work of fiction, the Fûryû Shidôken Den (published in 1763), then move to the visual and scholarly output of his spiritual successor, Shiba Kôkan.  ii  Table of Contents Abstract............................................................................................................................ ii Table of Contents............................................................................................................ iii List of Figures ................................................................................................................. iv Chapter 1: Introduction ...................................................................................................1 Chapter 2: Textual Images of Mt. Fuji: the Case of Hiraga Gennai ............................16 2.1: Gennai’s life and thought .......................................................................................16 2.2: The treatment of Mt. Fuji in the Fûryû Shidôken den..............................................24 Chapter 3: Visual Images of Mt. Fuji ............................................................................38 3.1: Towards landscape paintings: Ike Taiga .................................................................47 3.2: The advent of the western gaze: Shiba Kôkan and Mt. Fuji as a national symbol....54 3.2.1: Kôkan and Mt. Fuji .........................................................................................61 3.2.2: The iconography of power...............................................................................66 3.2.3: Kôkan’s Fuji propaganda.................................................................................74 Chapter 4: Conclusion....................................................................................................85 Bibliography .................................................................................................................126  iii  List of Figures Fig 1: “At the Foot of Mt. Fuji,” NIPPON, no. 6 (1936): 22–23. From Weisenfeld 2000, p. 762........................................................................................................................95 Fig 2: Maple leaves at New Palace, artist unknown, December 1888, Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. 2000.237a-c. Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston....................................................................................96 Fig 3: 500-yen bonds, 1878. From Trede 2008, p. 92. .......................................................97 Fig 4: Nippon Yûsen Kaisha. S.S. “Awa Maru”. Late-Meiji period. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Leonard A. Lauder Collection of Japanese Postcards. Accession Number 2002.4947. Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Built in 1899 by Mitsubishi, the ship sailed the route between Japan and England till 1914 when it was assigned the route between Yokohama and Seattle. ............................................98 Fig 5: Nakabayashi Chikutô, Shinshû Kikanzu. From Kano 1994, pp. 58-59. ....................99 Fig 6: Katsushika Hokusai, Fugaku Sanjûrokkei, Gohyakurakanji. From Calza 2003,.....100 Fig 7: Ike Taiga, 500 Arhats. Accessible online at < .......................................................101 Fig 8: Ike Taiga, Fuji in the 12 Months. From Takeuchi 1992, pp. 54-61. .......................102 Fig 9: Ike Taiga, True view of Mt. Asama. From Takeuchi 1992, pp. 46-47.....................103 Fig 10: Ike Taiga, Minô Waterfall. From Takeuchi 1992, p. 6. ........................................103 Fig 11: Shiba Kôkan, Minô Waterfall. From Seiyû Ryotan, 1794. University of British Columbia, Rare Books and Special Collections, Japanese Maps, G155.J2 S5 1794. 104 Fig 12: Shiba Kôkan, Minô Waterfall. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 45........................................................................................................................104 Fig 13: Hiraga Gennai, Seiyô Fujinzu. From Johnson 2005, p. 35. ..................................105 Fig 14: Odano Naotake, Takazu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 89............................................................................................................................106 Fig 15: Shiba Kôkan, Kôkan Hahazô. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 75........................................................................................................................107 Fig 16: Odano Naotake, Fujigakuzu. From Johnson 2005, p. 86......................................107 Fig 17: Shiba Kôkan, Enoshima Fujibôenzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 293...................................................................................................107 Fig 18: Odano Naotake, Enoshimazu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 293......................................................................................................................108 Fig 19: Shiba Kôkan & Satake Shozan, Seiyô Danjozu. From Johnson 2005, p. 145. ......108 Fig 20: Tani Bunchô, Kôyo Tanshôzu. From Screech 2000, p. 65....................................109 Fig 21: Shiba Kôkan, Sôshû Kamakura Shichirigahamazu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 166...................................................................................................109 Fig 22: Shiba Kôkan, Kisarazu Uranozu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 176. ..........110 Fig 23: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Satsuda Fujisanzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, iv  sakuhinron. p. 242...................................................................................................110 Fig 24: Shiba Kôkan, Teppôzu Fujienbôzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron. p. 255...................................................................................................111 Fig 25: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Satsuda Fujisanenbôzu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 266..........................................................................................................................112 Fig 26: Shiba Kôkan, Edojo Gairanjinzu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 125. ..........113 Fig 27: Katsushika Hokusai, Fugaku Hyakkei, Raichôno Fuji. Accessible online at <.....114 Fig 28: Katsushika Hokusai, Tôkaidô Gojûsantsugino uchi hara. From Suzuki 2007, p. 95............................................................................................................................115 Fig 29: Okamura Masanobu, Chôsenjin Raichônozu. From Toby 1986, p. 427................115 Fig 30: Shiba Kôkan, Kanayadai Fugaku Enbôzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 305...................................................................................................116 Fig 31: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Iwafuchi Fujizu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 310...................................................................................................116 Fig 32: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Kashiwara Fujizu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 309.117 Fig 33: Matsumoto Gengendô, Dôsen Nihon Yochi Zaizu. University of California at Berkeley. East Asian Library, Japanese Historical Maps Collection. Image No: jhm000033a. Courtesy of the C. V. Starr East Asian Library University of California, Berkeley. ...............................................................................................118 Fig 34: Katsushika Hokusai, View of Famous Places on the Tokaidô at a Glance. From.119 Fig 35: Hyôshiya Ichirôbei, Eiri Edo Ôezu. From Yamashita 1998, p. 103......................120 Fig 36: Ishikawaya Wasuke & Akitaya Ryôsuke (publisher), Shûgyoku Ryômen Dôchû Ki. From Yamashita 1998, p. 178............................................................................121 Fig 37: Great Tôkai Earthquake. From Yamashita 1998, p. 232......................................122 Fig 38: Fuji Môde Hitori Annai. From Yokota 1999, p. 20..............................................122 Fig 39: Naraya Kurohaku (publisher), Map of the Seven Hot Springs of Hakone. From...123 Fig 40: Map of Suruga Province. From Yamashita 1998, p. 75. ......................................124 Fig 41: Katsushika Hokusai, The Great Wave at Kanagawa. From Calza 2003, p. 418. Bibliothèque nationale de France. ...........................................................................125  v  Chapter 1: Introduction  Mt. Fuji is a “beautiful, almost perfect cone. Since ancient times, people have regarded it as sacred—some even worshipped it as a god. Today, about 300,000 people make the climb every year, realizing their dream to get to the top at least once in their lifetime. Mount Fuji continues to have a special place in the hearts of the Japanese,” states an article in the “special feature” section of Nipponia, a government-sponsored multilingual magazine aiming at introducing Japan and its culture to a foreign audience.1 In The Daily Yomiuri as well, we learn, with photo evidence, that “Mt. Fuji is a … true symbol of Japan” and that “indeed, many non-Japanese think of Mt. Fuji when they think of Japan.”2 Fuji holds a distinguished place on the website of the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well as on a number of Japanese embassies’ websites in countries ranging from China to Austria.3 That Mt. Fuji is a symbol of Japan is common knowledge. It is worshiped in about 1300 Sengen (  also read Asama) shrines all over the country, appears behind a branch  of cherry blossoms on the back of the 1000 yen bill, as a watermark in the Japanese passport, and figures on an ever increasing number of postage stamps—both in Japan and 1N I P P O N I A  No.35 December 15, 2005, accessible online at: <http://web-  japan.org/nipponia/nipponia35/en/feature/index.html> (Last accessed in May 2011). 2  Makoto Miyazaki. “The soul of a nation/Mt. Fuji”. The Daily Yomiuri, May 2005.  3  See: <http://www.mofa.go.jp/index.html> (Last accessed in May 2011). 1  abroad—since its introduction in the 1922, 4/8/20 sen series.4 The fact that the Fuji-san offers great value in terms of identification has not gone unnoticed by creators of popular culture either. The dazzling views of Mt. Fuji as seen from the Tokyo Bay, inherited from 19th-century woodblock prints, regularly appear as a transition in movies and animation whenever the director needs to impress the change to a Japanese setting onto the spectator.5 Indeed, since Japan entered the modern world, decades of smart domestic and overseas governmental advertisement in the realm of public relations has successfully branded Fuji as one of the archipelago’s most potent national emblems along with the red rising sun (,  hinomaru), the cherry blossom (  , sakura) and the imperial crest (,  kikukamonsho, also called , kiku no gomon). Tokens of a very peculiar preoccupation for integrative political propaganda, national symbols are strongly associated with the rise of the nation-state. Modern nations are greedy entities; they require tremendous sacrifices, up to the ultimate one, sometimes for unspecified reasons (the infamous raison d’état) in the name of a special kind of love, patriotism, emanating from a special kind of subject, the citizen. But human beings are not naturally born citizens of national collectivities. Communication alone, via deliberate use of sign and symbols, can agglomerate disparate bodies into communities of shared  4  See <http://www.iomoon.com/fujiagain.html> (Last accessed in June 2011).  5  See for example the scene depicting the arrival of Captain Nathan Algray to Japan in  the movie “The Last Samurai”. 2  experience.6 Myths, heroes, national monuments, anthems, flags, crests or national mottos have come to constitute the sensory range of the publicity scheme of great nations to foster loyalty, inspire respect and soften differences in the fatherland while making foes and allies abroad aware of their physical and cultural boundaries. Advertisement as an agent of government marketing, particularly its successful use in the creation of citizenry and promotion of governmental support both at the turning point between the pre-modern and modern world as well as in our contemporary societies has been the subject of increasing focus in scholarly discussion over the past two decades. Jonathan Rose has demonstrated its crucial use in creating and promoting the myth of Canadian identity from the 19th century onward; Peter van Ham, writing about state-public relations in Europe, has concluded that the application of the European Union logo to a wide range of products will make it one of the world’s most trendy brands; and Joan Landes, looking at republican visual communication during the 1789 French revolution, has argued for the prevalence of allegories such as “La Republique” in nurturing the young state.7 From these works, it clearly follows that national symbols are the keystone of a 6  John Dewey. The public and its Problems. New York: H. Holt and company, 1927, p.  142. 7  Jonathan Rose. “Government advertising and the creation of national myths: the Canadian  case.” International Journal of Nonprofit and Voluntary Marketing 8 (2003); Peter Van Ham. “The rise of the Brand State: the postmodern politics of image and reputation.” Foreign Affairs 80 (2001); Joan Landes. Visualizing the nation: gender, representation and 3  propaganda enterprise that seeks to sell a new perception of civilization and overcome resistance to integration through an efficient management of desire and subjectivity. By nature, national symbols are most visibly articulated during periods of increased political tension. Japan is no exception. Ancestor of our modern Nipponia, the magazine NIPPON, published in the 1930s for the same foreign audience and benefiting from the same government backing as its modern equivalent, does not disappoint in giving the reader an idealized view of Mt. Fuji in English, French, German and Spanish. Assuredly, we learn that for the community living near the giant, “the spirit of the mountain is [a] guide in life, its mysterious influence fills their days with happiness from childhood to old age, and they are never discontented, nor forget to thank Fuji-san for the deep comfort it gives.”8 The statement is supported by a graphic design work that is not in any way inferior to the best of our contemporary magazines (fig 1). A dynamic diagonal and counter diagonal composition of glossy photographs featuring local scenery and close-ups of smiling children’s faces gives a great sense of depth in the page; state of the art typesetting and the use of a friendly calligraphic typeface for the title welcomes the viewer into a rustic yet sleek Fuji fairyland. Still skimming backwards through the archive of Japanese propaganda, one will inevitably stumble across the imagery left by the demise of the Tokugawa bakufu and the revolution in eighteen century France. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2001. 8  Gennifer Weisenfeld. “Touring Japan-as-Museum: NIPPON and Other Japanese  Imperialist Travelogues.” Positions 8 (2000). 4  Meiji Restoration of 1868 which marks the birth of the Japanese nation-state. Over the span of the Meiji period (1868-1912) various pressures from western countries in combination with the recurring nationalist language of the nativist (, Tokugawa (,  kokugaku) heritage of the late  also called Edo, , 1603-1868) period fostered  a series of religious  policies intended to frame a symbolic legitimacy for the state via the construction of a myth of cultural identity. This myth, brought forth by various concurring movements organized around calls such as “loyalty to the emperor and patriotism” (, the cleansing of the “divine nation” (, polity” (,  chûkun aikoku),  shinkoku), or the formation of a “national  kokutai), crystallized in the creation of the national ideology of State Shintô.  The forced separation between Buddhism and Shintô (,  shinbutsu bunri), the  promotion of national kami, as well as the forced enshrinement of Ise talismans in Japanese homes during the Great Promotion Campaign (,  taikyô senpu undô), and the  abolition of class divisions, illustrate the endeavor of the state to force its new doctrine onto a body of so-perceived original symbols of “Japanesness,” including Mt. Fuji, in order to instill in its citizenry the concept of their belonging to a unified spiritual entity centered around the emperor as the true head of state, in a supposedly unbroken line of descent since the legendary creation of the country by the gods Izanagi and Izanami.9 As national symbols are handy devices in legitimating transformations of a nation’s authority structure, the Meiji government was particularly concerned with the 9  Helen Hardacre. Shintô and the State, 1868-1988. Princeton: Princeton University Press,  1989, p. 87. 5  adequate articulation, projection and recognition of its propaganda apparatus.10 Demonstrating this priority, the maiden public communication given by the emperor addressed the Japanese in these terms: “we [the Meiji emperor] intend personally to rule over the entire country, to comfort you, the numberless people, and in the end to open up the ten thousand leagues of ocean waves, to proclaim the glory of our country to the world and bring to the land the unshakable security of Mt. Fuji.”11 This superimposition of Fujisan on the Japanese nation was graphically translated into a number of prints, among which is the interesting “Maple Leaves at New Palace” triptych (fig 2.) In an effort to provide the masses with a guide to the assimilation of modernity and impress upon them the just return to imperial rule, this woodblock unites in the visual field a number of Japanese symbols old and new. Traditionally dressed ladies-in-waiting, human echoes of the autumnal maple leaves reminiscent of the lyric heyday of the Heian court, serve to frame an emperor in western military uniform. The pavilion wraps its western furniture, framed painting and European curtains in a classical domestic architecture prominently adorned with the imperial crest—the kikukamonsho mentioned earlier. Finally, the setting itself, a traditional garden, serves both as a tangible anchor securely fastened to the Japanese land as well as a pretext for an elaborate political 10  Karen A. Cerulo. Identity design: the sight and sound of a nation. Amherst: Rutgers  University Press, 1995, p. 26. 11  Donald Keene. Emperor of Japan: Meiji and his world, 1852-1912. New York :  Columbia University Press, 2002, p. 140. 6  metaphor. Via the use of shakkei (,  lit: borrowed scenery), a technique by which the  garden designer imports elements of the far landscape into the garden itself, Fuji is brought to the emperor, father of all Japanese. The nation has submitted to its new ruler. It comes as no surprise then that the first military vessel selected to receive an imperial visit during a naval display was appropriately the “Fuji,” flagship of the recently created navy.12 Evidence of the efforts deployed by the Meiji state to master the art of cultural politics, Meiji-period advertisement discourse seeks to selling products and services that have a civilizing effect on its freshly unified market. The 1878 500-yen national bonds, issued to finance new transportation developments (fig 3), visually unified old and new symbols: Empress Jingû sits in the foreground presiding over a landscape in which working peasants welcome a steam engine. Mt. Fuji, rising tall in the background, lends its all-encompassing unifying gaze to vouch for the success of modernization. Similarly, a late Meiji postcard showcasing in the foreground the N.Y.K. Awa Maru, the first ship assigned to link Japan and England (fig 4), boldly articulates Fuji-san as an all-powerful metaphor of the glorious nation-state and its new citizenry. Old means of travel are represented in the picture by a drawing of traditional footwear in the foreground and a caravan climbing a rocky hill in the background. These are contrasted with a photograph of a modern means of transportation, the steam ship Awa Maru. However, I think that rather than testifying to a genuine trademark creation within the domain of nationalistic visual rhetoric, the passage from the old to the new world is 12  ibid, p. 165. 7  here more evocative of an evolution and systematization resulting from the widespread adoption of science and technology. It is probably this widespread systematization emanating from the will of a centralized government which led Mary Elisabeth Berry to comment that “the work of nationalism, and the creation of essentially new symbols, was the work of Meiji."13 But this infatuation with Fuji-san as a signifier of a monolithic Japan was not, contrary to expectation, created with the modern state. In fact, by the time the Meiji government appropriated it, Mt. Fuji had already benefited from at least a century of recurring refinement as a symbol of a unified Japanese entity. In his Studies in the Intellectual History of Japan, published in three parts between 1940 and 1944, Maruyama Masao argues that the emergence of Japan as a nationstate in the late 19th century was a natural consequence of its cultural development over the Edo period, which he characterized as a significant cultural integration lacking political consciousness. Yet, looking at the rhetoric constructed around Mt. Fuji by a number of Tokugawa intellectuals, one can hardly conclude that their message was totally disengaged from political concerns. In fact, I would like to argue that the use of Fuji as a national symbol was both produced, as well as encouraged, by a movement of cultural cohesion developing over the second half of the Tokugawa era. I am, however, well aware that speaking of national integration in a society founded on class differences can be precarious and that it would be foolish to attribute to 13  Mary Elizabeth Berry. “Was Tokugawa Japan culturally integrated?” Modern Asian  Studies 31 (1997), p. 555. 8  the Edo period the same widespread enforced homogeneity that Meiji society achived after the Russo-Japanese War. Differences were pervasive under shogunate rule. As suggested by the often overtly polarized accounts of the land left by a wide body of travel diaries from this period, early modern Japan was a patchwork of dialects, customs, beliefs and faiths, further divided by the tension between rulers and ruled, tax payers and tax consumers, esthetes and rustics. The multiplicity of regional authorities, too, akin to the pre-Bismark German principalities in their legislative and economic independence from the shogunate, fractured the political landscape into more or less autonomous “countries” (  , kuni).14 So  how can it be possible to speak of a national integration in a society whose raison d’être seems to be the daily reinforcement of social schism? Equally suggested by this body of travel diaries is the pervasive tendency of early modern members of Japanese collectivities to seek, record, compare and debate information about their surroundings. Not only travel diaries, but virtually all media joined this information revolution. From playing cards and board games to popular literature, encyclopedias and commercial listings, early modern Japanese subjects fervently exposed the intricacy of their world, and commodified a culture that was once solely in the hands of the aristocracy and clergy. The system of alternate attendance (, under which the great domainal lords (,  sankin kôtai)  daimyô) and their retinues were forced to  move back and forth between residences in Edo and their fiefs on a regular basis, upheld 14  Mark Ravina. Land and Lordship in Early Modern Japan. Stanford: Stanford University  Press, 1999, pp. 196-197. 9  the demographic boom of the capital. The Gokaidô highways ()  linking major city  centers and their myriad relay stations, originally a military enterprise of the bakufu, became the arteries and hubs of a distribution network that fed an audience more and more eager to learn how to define themselves as Japanese. Commoners, too, happily joined this new culture of movement and, despite being originally regulated by a system of passports, the practice of leaving on touristic pilgrimage without permission (,  nukemairi)  became so wide-spread by the end of the 18th century that the bakufu, tired of issuing unsuccessful directives to contain the movement, fundamentally relaxed its regulation.15 Exploring the many famous sites (, meisho  ) en route, commoner and samurai gradually  delineated the border of the comprehensive entity we know as Nippon. As culture became a matter of choice, the public sphere became saturated with brothels and restaurants to satisfy the bodily hungers of this unstoppable flux of people and, in the cities, provided the space to accommodate the reunions of literary circles or firefighter guilds while entertaining the masses with exhibitions of paintings, calligraphy or dance spectacles. In fact, the demand for places of social intercourse developed to such an extent that, by 1804, Edo was dappled by 6165 restaurants, not counting street stands and various noodle shops.16 15  Constantine Vaporis. Breaking barriers: travel and the state in early modern Japan.  Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1994, pp. 141 & 172. 16  Naomichi Ishige. Développement des restaurants Japonais pendant la périod Edo  (1603—1867). In De Lamps A. H., Pitte Jean-Robert ed. Les restaurants dans le monde et à trâvers les ages. Grenoble: Edition Glenat, 1990. 10  However, these developments alone cannot account fully for the central role played by media in early modern society. Even if, in many media images were preponderant to the text and the clever use of signs such as family crests (,  kamon)  frequently ensured that even illiterates could identify the origin of the message, limited literacy was often required to fully comprehend it or grasp the subtle puns pervasive in Japanese cultural production.17 Thus, a brief discussion of literacy levels is necessary. Most scholars agree that, especially in the city centers, schooling for both boys and girls under a variety of accommodations was common in Tokugawa times. Aside from the domainal schools (,  hankô) which were usually reserved for the more advanced  training of samurai, early modern Japan saw a multiplication of primary schools, the terakoya (),  as well as large scale self-supporting private academies (,  shijuku),  offering advanced and/or specialized training in the arts, humanities or sciences. Richard Rubinger, in his study of private academies, provides the following data: in the years 1751 to 1788, there were 38 shijuku, 47 terakoya and 40 han schools listed in Japan. By the time of the restoration, these numbers had reached 1076 for the shijuku, 10,202 for the terakoya and 225 for the han schools.18 This boom in education had several profound consequences for Japan’s early modern society. First, as both the primary schools and private academies 17  Ekkehard May. Die Kommerzialisierung der japanischen literatur in der spaten Edo-Zeit  (1750-1868). Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz, 1983, p. 133. 18  Richard Rubinger. Private Academies of Tokugawa Japan. Princeton: Princeton  University Press, 1982, p. 5. 11  accepted commoners, status no longer prevented access to knowledge. The terakoya usually limited themselves to providing the rudimentary education necessary to grasp simple texts, that is to say primarily the knowledge of kana and basic kanji, sometimes a little arithmetic and Confucian studies. However, the publishing industry’s practice of adding ample furigana glosses next to all but the simplest kanji, made a wide range of texts accessible to those of only limited education. Besides, by the end of the period, city terakoya curriculum offered training sufficiently elaborated to even awaken in their pupils a keen sense of contemporary political issues.19 As a result, educated commoners not only gradually replaced samurai and priests as primary teachers in long-standing schools but also, following the drive for entrepreneurship, many established new schools, thereby exponentially stretching the area in which education was available.20 Moreover, the increasing demand by the domains for specialists promoted the development of yûgaku () 19  scholarship programs under which provincial young men  Herbert Passin. Society and education in Japan. Tokyo: Kodansha International, 1982,  p. 36. 20  Brian Wesley Platt, looking at the evolution of teachers during the Edo period, shows  that the percentage of commoner teachers increased as the period progressed. At the close of the period, the percentage of commoners engaged in teaching reached about 84% in the Shinano province. See Platt Brian Wesley. “School, Community, and State Integration in Nineteenth-Century Japan”. Ph.D. dissertation, University of Illinois, 1998, p. 23. 12  were sent to study in city shijuku, creating opportunities for widening their experiences and knowledge of the land beyond their local community through first-hand interaction in a diversified student body. Understandably, such commonly-found arrangements helped in breaking regional barriers and promoting a more unified national culture. This heightened need for advanced training also provided opportunities for social mobility as well as class erosion, as the sharing out of maintenance duties and the merit-based evaluation systems in private academies took no account of students’ difference in origin.21 This dissemination of urban learning to the peripheries, in return, fostered the development of regional culture. From the numerous records remaining of wealthy aspiring scholars leaving the countryside for Edo or Kyoto outside of yûgaku arrangements in order to get advanced training, one can see that many returned to their provinces with books and prints to open a school and transmit their knowlege. Frequently, these scholars stayed in contact with their former classmates and teachers in the city, thereby establishing nationwide intellectual networks along which information flowed. For example, Kaya Shirao (1737-1791), after opening his own haikai school in Edo, frequently returned to his native Shinano province during the summer and winter to instruct aspiring commoner poets, many of whom became haikai teachers themselves.22 By the 19th century, schooling had become so commonplace in Japan that visiting foreigners never ceased to marvel at how integral a part of urban and rural landscape literacy was. In 1858, British captain 21  Rubinger 1982, pp. 15, 23, 80, 97, 149.  22  Platt 1998, pp. 33-34. 13  Sherard Osborn, spending a few weeks in Edo, wrote "a knowledge of reading and writing is very general amongst these people, more so we fear than in England."23 Finally, it should be remembered as well that, especially in small-scale communities such as villages, given the proximity of people and their daily interaction, one reader alone could actually enlighten the collective whole. Through public reading and second-hand intelligence, people with little or no reading ability could acquire information and participate in political discourse.24 Generally too, the impact and pervasiveness of ideals carried by the media is reinforced by the fact that each individual exposed, through his membership in smaller collectivities would propagate the message in oral conversation. For the reasons cited above, we can assume that, after 1750 and at least in Edo, Kyoto and Osaka, as well as in regional castle towns and along the Gokaidô network, a significant portion of the Japanese population were given both the necessary tools and a sufficient degree of exposure to media in order to participate in the making of a shared consciousness. As a number of scholars have already suggested, fundamentally speaking, the class-free intelligence osmosis resulting from the underemployment of the samurai caste, the development of communication networks and the rise of literacy, might well be 23  P.F. Kornicki. “Literacy revisited.” Monumenta Nipponica 56 (2001), p. 385.  24  Harvey J. Graff. The literacy myth: cultural integration and social structure in the  nineteenth century. New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers, 1991, p. 214, R.S. Schofield “The Measurement of Literacy in Pre-industrial England”. In Jack Goody, ed. Literacy in Traditional Societies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1968, p. 313. 14  the most important characteristic of the Edo period. This is what contrasts it the most with the middle ages and is its surest link to the contemporary world.25 In this thesis, I will try to demonstrate, mainly through the works of Hiraga Gennai and Shiba Kôkan, how Mt. Fuji was articulated as a political tool for cultural integration during the late Edo period. First focusing on Gennai’s most famous work of fiction, the Fûryû Shidôken den, I will then examine the writings and paintings of Kôkan. Through this investigation, I hope the use of Mt. Fuji as a national symbol of the Japanese nation before its transformation into a modern nation-state will become evident.  25  Berry 1997, p. 549. 15  Chapter 2: Textual Images of Mt. Fuji: the Case of Hiraga Gennai 2.1: Gennai’s life and thought Among the great intellectuals who animated the various discourses operating in Japanese intellectual circles during the Edo period, Hiraga Gennai (, 17281779) was certainly one of the most colorful. Gennai’s career was extremely varied. His multiple endeavors spanned fields as diverse and distant as natural sciences (or more exactly honzôgaku ),  rangaku ()  , mining, painting and literature. His vitriolic  writing style was ambitious to a degree sometimes bordering on egotism, and his multiple talents, coupled with a rather unorthodox stance vis-à-vis a feudal system that severely limited his prospects, would ensure Gennai’s marginal but astonishing existence a legendary status even during his lifetime. Indeed, so singular was his life that his friend Sugita Genpaku (, 1733-1817),  shocked by Gennai’s unexpected death26,  composed the following poem: Ah, an extraordinary man! He was fond of extraordinary things  26  Gennai died in prison of self-inflicted wounds. He was waiting to be judged for a  quarrel (which arose from a simple misunderstanding) in which he severely harmed a business associate. The latter died from the wound Gennai inflicted on him. Stanleigh H. Jones. “Scholar, Scientist, Popular Author Hiraga Gennai, 1728-1780”. Ph.D. dissertation, Columbia University, 1968, pp. 25-26. 16  What he did was extraordinary But why must his death be so extraordinary?27 In order to analyze a particular discourse about Mt. Fuji that Gennai held in one of his most famous works of fiction, the Fûryû Shidôken den (, 1763),  I  would like to start by giving a short account of the author’s life. Gennai was born a low ranking samurai (ashigaru )  in a small coastal city in the Takamatsu fief. Very little  is known about his childhood, but by 1744 we know that the daimyo of Takamatsu, Matsudaira Yoritaka (, 1739-1771), recognizing  the young prodigy’s talent for  the field of honzôgaku, employed him as pharmacist (kusuri bôzu ). Honzôgaku, originally a Chinese tradition, was a discipline annexed to the medical sciences, which focused on the study of trees, herbs and plants (sometimes minerals as well) for their therapeutic value. The so-called honzôgakusha tried to draw an inventory of the natural resources that were available in the land and determine their correct name, taste and possible usage in medicine. It is here worthy of note that this particular frame of mind, this particular way of looking at the land to put its resources to practical use, fundamentally influenced Gennai. In 1752, the same daimyô sent Gennai to Nagasaki to learn western medical techniques, probably under one of the numerous physician-translators who ensured  27  Jôfuku Isamu .  Hiraga Gennai no kenkyû .  Tokyo: Sôgensha,  1977, p. 428. Translation in Jones 1968, p. 167. 17  communication between the small Dutch community stationed on Dejima island and Japanese officialdom. This first encounter with the West profoundly impressed the young scholar who, once back in Takamatsu after a year spent in Nagasaki, took a series of rather drastic measures to disengage himself from the han and realize his ambition of a career at the national level. Gennai spent the next two or three years traveling in the Kansai region, sojourning in Osaka and Kyoto. These years attest to his first invention and commercial endeavor: a compass, certainly based on a Dutch model he acquired in Nagasaki, realized at the demand of Kimura Wataru (who would become a minister of Yoritaka), and the establishment of a small pottery manufacturing industry in the region of Shido. The interest Gennai took in pottery stemmed from his awareness of the trade imbalance that plagued Japanese exchanges with China and the Dutch. In the 1750s Japanese pottery was of too poor a quality to be favorably considered for export by foreign dealers in Nagasaki. On the contrary, Japan imported large quantities of pottery goods made in Holland and China, quality products highly appreciated by masters of the tea ceremony. Gennai must have also learnt in Nagasaki the techniques necessary to replicate foreign earthenware and, after finding appropriate soil, thought that stimulating the production of ceramics that were qualitatively equal to those that Japan imported, would prove useful to his country.28 National benefit (kokueki )  is indeed a recurring theme in Gennai’s  writing and motivated most of his endeavors, as we will also see with his efforts to follow 28  Jôfuku 1977, p. 178. 18  Tanuma’s policy to increase mining resources.29 Eliminating the cost of ceramic imports and providing Japan with a new export product should have been a seductive idea for the authorities but, unfortunately, despite repeated efforts over the course of his lifetime, these Gennai-yaki () never  attracted the attention Gennai foresaw they would  receive and our entrepreneur-inventor moved on to seek fame elsewhere. Gennai arrived in Edo in 1757 and first stayed in Kanda at the Shôheikô, which was the official center of Confucian studies in Edo until the early 1760s.30 Since it is clear from Gennai’s writing that he did not hold Confucian scholars in high esteem, his motivation for staying at the Seidô must have been other than scholarship; most likely he saw in his registration no more than a means to get affordable accommodations in the city.31 After settling down, he enrolled in the school of the famous honzôgakusha Tamura Ransui (, 1718-1776) 29 30  and that of the kokugakusha Kamo no Mabuchi  Jones 1968, pp. 32 & 118. Under the direction of the Hayashi family, teaching members of the Shôheikô  (originally known as the Seidô) were in charge of instilling a state backed version of Confucianism, initially into a select audience (including the Shogun). Following the directive of Shogun Yoshimune, the audience of the daily lectures offered by this institution widened considerably and, by the time Gennai reached Edo, audience was also granted to people outside the samurai class. See Maes Hubert. Hiraga Gennai et son Temps. Paris: École Française d’Éxtreme Orient, 1970, p. 42. 31  ibid. 19  (, 1697-1769.)  The relation he had with Ransui was more productive and  continuous than his attendance at Kamo no Mabuchi’s school; yet both men had a clear influence on Gennai’s thought. Ransui, who conceived nature as a realm that man ought to utilize,32 distinguished himself from previous honzôgakusha by the distance he maintained from the Chinese tradition and his focus on extensive cataloging of the natural products available throughout Japan.33 He also experimented with the cultivation of new crops, notably ginseng (thus far an expensive import from Korea) to develop the national economy. With Ransui, Gennai organized the first exhibitions of natural products (bussankai) in Japan, which would grant him the fame that he was looking for. Of the samples displayed (around 2000 total), about half came from the personal collection of the organizers and the remaining half from private contributors from all over Japan.34 The goal of this exhibitions was twofold: first educational, by showing the public the various components of contemporary medications as well as allowing other honzôgakusha to attach the correct name to a particular object; and also entrepreneurial: to foster research 32  Maes 1970, p. 48.  33  Extensive cataloging of products and resources was a national trend at the time. Mary  Elizabeth Berry. Japan in Print. Information and Nation in the Early Modern Period. Berkeley:University of California Press, 2006, pp. 158-159. 34  George Sansom. A History of Japan 1615-1867. Stanford: Stanford University Press,  1963, p. 191. 20  and prospects on a national scale.35 The first exhibition was such a success that it was soon followed by a number of other events of the same kind, not only in Edo but also in Osaka, Kumamoto and Kyoto. The phenomenon reached its height of popularity in the 19th century, when bussankai were held on a regular basis in all the major provincial towns.36 According to Mary Elizabeth Berry, this great movement of enumeration, assessment, and cataloging of resources and products is characteristic of Japanese early-modernity. Over the course of the Edo period, writers of guidebooks, mapmakers and publishers of information about the land gradually claimed an open and egalitarian access to Japan’s cultural landscape. Through this process, cultural literacy became more important than social status to claim membership in society. By the mid-Edo period, inquiry was no longer limited to the physical characteristics of the nation as many writers started to turn towards social criticism—a trend that is exemplified, I believe, by the works of Hiraga Gennai especially the Fûryû Shidôken den. Interest in the characteristics of the land spurred an interest in culture and social norms. This in turn, created the context for an assessment of the social status quo.37 35  John Whitney Hall. Tanuma Okitsugu 1719-1788. Forerunner of Modern Japan.  Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1955, pp. 70-73. 36  P.F. Kornicki. “Public Display and Changing Values. Early Meiji Exhibitions and  Their Precursors”, Monumenta Nipponica, 49 (1994), p. 174. 37  Berry 2006, pp. 50-54. 21  The celebrity Gennai enjoyed after the start of the bussankai had a tangible repercussion on his life. It drew him to the attention of a powerful patron: senior counselor (rôjyû, )  Tanuma Okitsugu (, 1716-1788.)  38  It is not surprising  to see an association between the two men, as Tanuma and Gennai shared a number of characteristics. Both were born low-rank samurai and actively worked toward raising their status; both were interested in western technology and the world outside Japan. Under Tanuma’s leadership, Japan’s seclusionist policy regarding book imports was considerably relaxed, allowing for a much greater influx of foreign ideas as well as much closer and frequent interactions between Japanese officials and Dutch representatives. Aside from personal interest,39 Tanuma saw in the West a means to better the Japanese economy and, consequently, actively encouraged western studies. From their first meeting on, Tanuma showed great interest in Gennai’s endeavours. Not only did he repeatedly invite the scholar to report on the advancement of his studies, he also personally financed Gennai on many occasions and gave his protégé what he truly desired: opportunities to put his knowledge to use for the sake of his country. Owing to the influence of both Ransui and Tanuma, the bakufu repeatedly sent Gennai on special missions: in 1761 to Izu in order to supervise the production of soda ash; and around 1770 regularly to the region of Chichibu, where he discovered a number of natural resources: asbestos (which he unsuccessfully tried to weave and 38  Hall 1955, pp. 95-96.  39  Tanuma was extremely interested in western objects. Maes 1970, p. 64. 22  commercialize), gold, silver, copper and iron. After further prospecting, Gennai started exploiting the iron deposit, a choice that was most likely guided by Tanuma’s attempt to reform Japan’s monetary system with the introduction of new currency: small silver and iron coins.40 But despite initial success, problems refining the ore as well as the sudden change in bakufu financial policy brought his mining endeavors in the region to an end in 1775. Meanwhile, in 1773, the daimyô of Akita, Satake Yoshiatsu (also known as Satake Shozan, 1748-1785, ),  invited Gennai to help separate the silver metal  from the copper extracted in the Ani mine (leading to a subsequent rise in the domain’s profits) and to make a general survey of the resources available in Akita.41 As a bureaucrat, one of Satake Shozan’s most significant accomplishments was the amelioration of the finances of his han, but he was also an accomplished painter. Founding figure of the “Akita School,” he first trained in the Kanô style and became interested in Western painting techniques (yôga) after meeting Gennai. Western painting techniques were first introduced in Japan by the Jesuits but faded into oblivion after the Christian’s expulsion and the enforcement of the ban on Christianity. Gennai had studied Western painting, probably during one of his stays in Nagasaki, and was, at the time, also considered the first Japanese to try to revive and 40  Hall 1955, p. 68.  41  The Akita domain is located in the northern part of Japan’s main island, Honchû, that  is, several hundred kilometers away from Edo. 23  apply these techniques.42 It was his interest in European pigments as a honzôgakusha that first sparked Gennai’s interest in Western painting. He also immediately realized the benefits to not only honzôgaku, but other fields as well, of being able to realistically depict the subjects of their study, and became an ardent advocate of yôga.43 While he was in Akita, Gennai introduced several painters, including Shozan and his retainer Odano Naotake (, 1749-1780),  to the concepts of shading and perspective. Odano,  favorably impressed with the education he received in Akita, became Gennai’s disciple and followed him back to Edo to further his studies of Western art. It is in light of this highly abbreviated, sketchy account of Gennai’s biography that we must now turn to the last facet of his life, his literary career, and look at his most famous literary piece, the Fûryû Shidôken den. 2.2: The treatment of Mt. Fuji in the Fûryû Shidôken den The Fûryû Shidôken den44 ()  was published in 1763 in five  42  Maes 1970, p. 133.  43  Jones 1968, pp. 66-69.  44  For a partial translation in English see: Jones 1968, or, Haruo Shirane, ed. Early  Modern Japanese Literature: An Anthology, 1600-1900. Columbia: Columbia University Press, 2004. In French see Hubert Maes, trans. Histoire Galante de Shidoken. Paris: L’Asiathèque,1979. The original text is available either in Nihon koten bungaku taikei 55; or online at <http://kindai.da.ndl.go.jp/info:ndljp/pid/879494/1> (Last accessed in April 2011). 24  volumes and stands out as Japan’s first fantastic voyage. The story, with its many puns, erotic dimension and unusual settings is highly entertaining. The book was an immediate success, it was reprinted often during the Edo period and remained popular well into the Meiji period.45 The tale is loosely based on the life of Fukai Shidôken (1680-1765) who first served as a Shingon priest in Kyoto but abandoned the priesthood to travel the country, eventually drifting to Edo where he became hugely famous as a preacher/entertainer giving public lectures on the grounds of the Asakusa temple. The narration follows the life of a young monk, Asanoshin, who embarks on an erotic quest for meaning due to a fortuitous encounter with a pedagogically-minded Taoist hermit. After touring the city of Edo, particularly the red light districts, Asanoshin visits many places in Japan (particularly brothels) and finally leaves the country, using a magical fan imbued with the powers of the hermit, to further broaden his horizons. His travels take him to many lands, fantastic and real, among which, the realm of little people, of giants, of long legs, the kingdom of women, China and Korea. After a life spent inquiring into the mysteries of human relationships and exploring foreign lands to articulate the place of Japan in the world, Asanoshin has, according to Regine Johnson, learned lessons about the value of his country. His experiences abroad have led Asanoshin to articulate an independent place for Japan in the world as well as to reject 45  Regine Diane Johnson. “Fantastic voyage: Refraction of the real, re-visions of the  imagined in Hiraga Gennai’s “Fûryû Shidôken Den.”” Ph.D. dissertation, Harvard University, 1989, pp. 5 & 113. 25  the China-centric chauvinistic assumption that all who do not follow the lead of the culturally superior middle kingdom are mere barbarians.46 He is brought back home by his protector, the Taoist hermit, and must now pass on his knowledge to the masses. The story ends with a scene depicting Asanoshin hitting his walking stick on the ground of the Asakusa temple to gather an audience to start telling his life story. It is easy to see in the Fûryû Shidôken den the literary expression of the many trends that characterize Gennai’s intellectual life, chiefly his interest in travel and the world outside Japan. But was the Fûryû Shidôken den conceived purely as a fiction meant to divert the public? In her doctoral dissertation, Regine Johnson examines the literary and pictorial information about the outside world circulating in Japan up to the time in which the Fûryû Shidôken den was published. She concludes that in Gennai’s time most people did not believe in the existence of the fantastic worlds so vividly depicted through Asanoshin’s odyssey.47 Given Gennai’s clear inclination towards pedagogical initiative visible not only in his actual undertakings, but also in the articulation of the basic plot of the story and the obvious link between the fictional character Fûrai Senjin and Gennai himself (he signed the book with his nom de plume Fûrai Sanjin),48 it seems clear that the Fûryû Shidôken den was meant to be read as edutainment. The author purposely chose to include fantastic lands that no one believed in to avoid interference with a more serious 46  Johnson 1989, p. 111.  47  Johnson 1989, p. 135.  48  Johnson 1989, p. 117. 26  message—regarding the definition of Japanese identity—and to build momentum for his discussion of the position of Japan vis-à-vis China. I believe that the fantastic (and the erotic) were used by Gennai to enliven a didactic message that otherwise might have been too stiff for the general public and provides him with mock “others” against which to contrast his own country in order to spread particular ideas of what exactly made Japan unique, made Japan as “nation.”49 In fact, Gennai’s attempt to articulate Japanese national identity reflected a public dialogue in which a great number of intellectuals from the Tokugawa period took part. Starting with the Neo-Confucians Hayashi Razan (, 1583-1657) Hakuseki (, 1657-1725), following Motoori Norinaga (, 1730-1801)  and Arai  with the kokugakusha Kamo no Mabuchi, and Hirata Atsutane (, 1776-1843),  these scholars successively reinterpreted the founding texts of the Japanese tradition to construct arguments dealing with the Japanese unique bicephalic power structure (religious power held by the emperor and politico-military power held by the shogun). Each of these philosophies held paramount a particular system: the Neo-Confucian 49  The Fûryû Shidôken den originally contains eleven illustrations (seven in the first  volume and four in the second) but none of them represent Mt. Fuji. These illustrations can be seen online in the 1791 edition held in the Waseda library. A copy of this edition is accessible at <http://www.wul.waseda.ac.jp/kotenseki/html/he13/he13_01791/index.html> (Last accessed in June 2011). 27  disowned Buddhism for Confucianism and the kokugakusha refuted both doctrines in search of a “pure” Japanese way.50 By the time Gennai wrote the Fûryû Shidôken den his teacher Kamo no Mabuchi and later Norinaga had retrieved—respectively through their philological research on the Man’yôshû and the Kojiki—what they thought to be a philosophy exempt from foreign influence. This scientific process of national reconstruction certainly appealed to Gennai’s belief in the practical application of science for the sake of the nation. Recurrently in the Fûryû Shidôken den, Gennai makes himself the spokesperson of the kokugakusha for whom the destruction of Chinese centrality and superiority was the foundation to establish an independent place for Japan:51 The things that a man should devote himself to need not go beyond 50  For more information on Tokugawa intellectual history, refer to Daniel Gardner. Chu  Hsi and the Ta-hsueh: Neo-Confucian Reflection on the Confucian Canon. Cambridge: Harvard East Asian Monographs, 1986; Kate Wildman Nakai. Shogunal Politics. Arai Hakuseki and the Premises of Tokugawa Rule. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1988 & Sei Nishimura. “The way of the Gods.” Monumenta Nipponica 46 (1991). 51  In the following excerpts Gennai echoes the views of Kamo no Mabuchi on the  inadequate nature of Confucian teachings to Japan, the importance of poetry and the role of the Emperor. See Flueckiger’s translation of the Kokuikô in Peter Flueckiger. “Reflections on the Meaning of Our Country, Kamo no Mabuchi’s Kokuikô.” Monumenta Nipponica 63 (2008), pp. 239-263. 28  scholarship and poetry and painting. But even these, when the instruction is bad, produce backwoods Confucianists who are so out of touch with the times that they will don formal attire to scrub out a well or try to bake a potato with flint and steel. They are so fettered with the trash of Chinese books that they have no freedom at all. […] Though they strain to appear intelligent their efforts are as ineffective as giving a summer airing to a box of armor. Thus, contrary to general belief, they are worse than the most mediocre men. We have names for them: we call them ‘rotten scholars’ and ‘farting Confucianists.’ […] China is China, Japan is Japan, antiquity was a long time ago, and the present is now.52 And again in the conclusion: The customs of China are different from those of Japan. Their emperor is little more than an itinerant laborer; if he doesn’t suit them, they change him. […] China is so debauched a country that the Sage had no choice but to make his appearance and give guidance. Japan is a country where humanity and justice are preserved; even if no sage comes forth there would still be peace. The Chinese are completely infatuated with their own culture. Yet they let the Manchus take their country from them […] and they have become a bunch of spineless dunces strutting about and calling themselves ‘men of the great Ch’ing Dynasty.’ […] In Japan, the fact that even a small child would be constrained to speak out—at the risk of being disrespectful—should the emperor be treated 52  Jones 1968, pp. 187-188. 29  roughly is because Japan is a country of loyalty and devotion to its sovereign. For the very reason that ours is an Emperor among emperors, no country is equal to Japan in all the world.53 Gennai’s pro-Japan discourse becomes particularly caustic with his narration of Asanoshin’s visit to China. After a sojourn in Korea and the Land of the Night to recover from his previous adventures, Asanoshin opts to visit China. In front of the imperial palace of Emperor K’ien-long in Beijing he suddenly decides to resort to his master’s magical fan to make himself invisible and visit the palace. But, upon reaching the closed quarters, he is immediately seduced by the sight of the emperor’s 3000 imperial consorts. Captured by so much beauty, Asanoshin hides himself in the building and every night enjoys the company of these ladies. Finally tricked into revealing himself, he is made captive by the guards and dragged in front of the emperor. The sovereign, intrigued by Asanoshin’s eloquence and experiences abroad, forgets to punish him and invites the hero to remain in the palace to entertain the Court with his travel stories. The court is particularly interested by Asanoshin’s description of the splendor of Mt. Fuji: In my home, Japan, we have a famous mountain named Fuji. In size it far exceeds the Five Sacred Mountains [of China.] Its eight-leaved peaks tower high in the sky, and throughout the four seasons the snow on it never melts. From whatever province one looks, the sight is, as an old poem says, ‘like a 53  Jones 1968, pp. 239-240. 30  white folding fan hanging upside down.’ […] The wind rushes out of Lava Cave and cool the whole world, and the snow that falls at Mount Fuji’s foot is made into a delicious drink we call ‘white sake.’ Such as the Five Sacred Mountains cannot hold a candle to Fuji.54 The Chinese emperor, upset to see his country’s best mountains lose to Mt. Fuji, invests Asanoshin with the mission to replicate Mt. Fuji in papier-mâché using one of the five peaks as a base. After collecting paper and glue from all over China, Asanoshin takes command of a fleet of 30,000 vessels headed for Japan in order to take an impression of the mountain. Meanwhile, the deity of Mt. Fuji, hearing of the plot, thinks that it would be a disaster for her country to let the Chinese make a replica: “for a copy of this famous mountain under my protection to be made in an alien land would be a disgrace to Japan.”55 She summons all the Japanese deities to the summit of Mt. Fuji to elaborate a plan in order to stop the endeavor. After deliberation, they decide to deal with the Chinese fleet the same way they did with the Mongolian army when it was about to invade Japan, and the gods of rain, wind and hail are sent to sink the boats before they have a chance to dock. Thus, through Gennai’s clever linguistic manipulation, Fuji comes to embody Japan as a whole and the five peaks are propelled to the status of China’s representative.56 54  Jones 1968, pp. 221-222.  55  Jones 1968, p. 225.  56  Marcia Yonemoto. Mapping Early Modern Japan. Space, Place, and Culture in the 31  But, if we can easily trace Gennai’s articulation of Japanese superiority over China to Mabuchi’s writings (and even more to those of Norinaga), the author’s bold treatment of Mt. Fuji as the greatest symbol of Japan seems problematic. To my knowledge, nowhere in his work did the kokugakusha suggest a link between Fuji and Japan as a “nation.” We are thus forced to look elsewhere to find the source of Gennai’s inspiration. Needless to say, the manner in which Asanoshin glorified Fuji in front of the emperor of China reflected the pride Edo residents took in living in a city from which Fuji was clearly visible.57 It was the biggest dream of a true Edoite to go once in his lifetime on a pilgrimage to the grand shrine in Ise and to climb Fuji. And for those with less time, disposable income, or just seeking an experience closer to their dwellings, by the time of the Fûryû Shidôken den’s publication, Edo was already filled with replicas of the mountain (Fujizaka ).  These replicas were built by members of the tirelessly  striving Fuji religion (Fujikô )  and allowed believers to practice devotions without  the hassle of actually traveling to the real mountain.58 In the second chapter of the Fûryû Shidôken den, Gennai makes an interesting Tokugawa Period (1603-1868). Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003, p. 123. 57  Inagaki Takeshi .  Hiraga Gennai Edo no yume .  Tokyo:  Shinchôsha, 1989, p. 86. 58  For a list of the Fujizaka built during the Edo period see, for example, Fujisan kentei  hôtei tekisuto, 2006, p. 97, or Henry D. Smith. “Fujizuka: The Mini-Mount Fujis of Tokyo.” Conference paper published by The Asiatic Society of Japan 3 (1986). 32  allusion to the Fujikô. While still in Japan, Asanoshin, wishing to know the state of things in Edo, has recourse to the magic fan to display in front of him what life in the city is like. Thus, a series of visions emanate from the fan, taking Asanoshin month by month through Edo’s calendar. For the 5th month, Gennai presents us with the image of a “crowd that rushes up to the celebration of Mt. Fuji, lift[ing] so much dust from the ground that one wonders whether or not these are clouds created by the straw dragon.”59 The celebration referred to here with “Gennaiesque” wit is that of the Fuji shrine located in Komagome (,  located in the Bunkyô ward of Tokyo), famous for its replica  of Mt. Fuji. The Komagone shrine was already known by Gennai’s time as an important sanctuary of the Fujikô. That Gennai knew the Fujikô seems very natural. He was very well connected in Edo and was a keen observer of the mores of his contemporaries. Moreover, his protector Tanuma was already a bakufu official (Chief of the Bureau of Palace Upkeep) in 1742 when the bakufu issued the first ban directed against this new religion.60 Did 59  The original reads  [][…] […]. Chapter two is absent from Stanleigh’s translation but can be found in Maes’s adaptation of the text in French: Maes 1979, p. 23. Maes informs us that the pun here plays on the fact that after participating in this event, people would take back home a long net made of woven straw called mugiwara-ryû, “straw dragon.” 60  Hall 1955, p. 35. 33  Tanuma and Gennai ever discuss the case of Fujikô? If so, there are no records proving it but the bakufu reissued a ban on Fujikô in 1775, the year after Tanuma’s downfall from the central government. Surely, the movement’s growth in the 1760-70s had caught the eye of the shogunate during the years Tanuma was at the height of his power. In any case, Gennai’s depiction of Mt. Fuji as the greatest mountain of the world () closely reproduces one of the fundamental ideas of the key figures of the Fujikô movement, Jikigyô Miroku (, 1671-1733),  whose disciples are credited with  starting the Fujikô boom in Edo. In Miroku’s writings, Mt. Fuji is treated as the origin of 61  China, India and Japan (),  that is to say, the most important  mountain in Asia. Knowing his aversion to subservience, it would not really be surprising to see in Gennai’s writings an aspiration towards a more egalitarian social system. The scholar was indeed fiercely attached to his freedom. Suffering from his low status within the feudal system, he constantly refused stable positions in the service of a particular lord, and attempted to serve his country from the social outskirts.62 Would the Fujikô doctrine 61  Kano Hiroyuki.  “”Akafuji” no fo-kuroa”.  E ha  kataru 14. Tokyo: Heibonsha, 1994, p. 59. 62  Gennai’s aversion to official employment (apart from temporary positions) is most  striking during his visit to Akita. The powerful daimyô of Akita, Satake Yoshiatsu, seduced by Gennai’s multiple talents, offered him a domain of 2000 koku. Yet Gennai turned down the offer and returned to Edo. See Maes 1970, p. 132. 34  have been attractive to him? Maybe so, since Miroku advocated equality between all classes of society (samurai, peasants, artisants and merchants) and had predicted the destruction of Japan’s feudal system and the advent of democracy.63 We have already mentioned the polymath’s chief concern with the practical application of knowledge and talent for the benefit of the nation. I believe we should see in the Fûryû Shidôken den yet another manifestation of this trend, a literary example rather than an entrepreneurial one. Following the lead of Kamo no Mabuchi, Gennai, as much as his hero Asanoshin, engages in a discourse that seeks to define what Japan is, a goal we are constantly reminded of through Asanoshin’s repeated assertions I am a person of Japan64. Regardless of a possible personal  “”,  interest in the Fujikô beyond that of pure curiosity, Gennai’s genius (pedagogically and intellectually speaking) probably sensed the opportunity to use a popular fad in Edo for the benefit of the “nation,” and overlaid a strong image of Mt. Fuji onto his ideal vision of his country, a Japanese community undivided by the barriers between han.65 In any case, even if for Gennai the association Fuji = Japan was no more than whimsical or perhaps coincidental, it left a profound impression on his followers. Rekisai 63  Iwashina Koichirô .  Fujikô no rekishi: Edo shomin no sangaku shinkô  : . Tokyo: Meicho shuppan, 1983, pp. 2-4. 64  This usage of the term “Japanese” is in sharp contrast with other contemporary travel  accounts in which the authors never make it so explicit. See Yonemoto 2003, p. 119. 65  Inagaki 1989, p. 56. 35  Rôjin66 ()  in his biography of Gennai, Hiraga jikki () published  in  1788, relates that Gennai, on his way to Edo for the first time, stopped by Mt. Fuji. The climbing season was already over, but Gennai insisted on climbing the mountain anyway, explaining that Fuji was indeed the greatest mountain of the three kingdoms ( 67  ).  Using an unusual device—a Dutch torch that projected light  100 feet around and produced an intense heat—Gennai safely reached the summit. There, he looked in all four directions and raising his hand said: “one must firmly make up his mind, for even if one is thinking about the benefit of the nation, if he has no energy, realizing this dream will be difficult” ( 68  ).  Beyond the fact that Rekisai’s account of Gennai’s trip to Mt. Fuji is surely romanticized, the author still presents us an interesting image very much in line with the Fûryû Shidôken den, in which, via Gennai, the interest of the “nation” is superimposed on Mt. Fuji. It is likewise no coincidence that Gennai’s spiritual successor, Shiba Kôkan, displayed a lasting interest in the natural monument as well. In the following section, we will see how he visually translated Gennai’s idea and how he used these images to 66  It is unclear who this Rekisai Rôjin was. Kano suggests he was a close acquaintance of  Gennai. Kano 1994, p. 44. 67  Enseki Jisshu . Tokyo: Chûôkôronsha, 1980, p. 155. The translation is mine.  68  ibid. The translation is mine. 36  promote cultural cohesion in Japan.  37  Chapter 3: Visual Images of Mt. Fuji Written works about the land, national or beyond the seas, fictional or factual, flourished in the Edo period. Gennai was not an exception but rather the norm. National gazetteers such as the Kokka man’yôki 1697 (The thousand leaves record of the provincial flowers, published in 21 volumes covering over 2000 pages) analyzed and enumerated the characteristics of Japan’s various provinces in numerous precise categories covering features as disparate as topography, chief crops and manufacture with figures given for annual productivity, principal sanctuaries and temples, lists of famous places, names and histories of local daimyo families along with a list of the domain’s principal office holders. Other works focused on a given area to cover it to even greater depth. The Edo kanoko (Dappled fabric of Edo), first published in 1687 and regularly updated thereafter, regroups about 300 physical features of Edo in 26 categories, recording in detail—up to the location of famous tea ceremony objects in the city.69 Interest in the land and its assets as something to be discovered and assessed was sparked by the importation of western ways of seeing. More exactly, this new system of perception was invented in the Netherlands, from which the Japanese imported most of their information about the western world, and was the genesis of a new genre of images, that is, landscape paintings. As Karatani has put it, landscape is not only “what is  69  Mary Elizabeth Berry. Japan in Print. Information and Nation in the Early Modern  Period. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006, pp. 7-8,14. 38  outside,” it is a perception created by a change in ways of seeing.70 During the 17th century, the various political, economic and religious shifts that accompanied the formation of the Dutch state gave new meanings to the land. Whereas other European nations, such as England, turned to their sovereigns to become the symbols of national identity, the Dutch, who had no figurehead to embody the identity of the state, turned instead to their land.71 Landscape painting through the new association it engendered created in the viewer both a sense of personal identity and a sense of belonging to a wider body of shared identities. Land became thus the locus of the formation of national identity.72 European ways of seeing reached Japan in various forms. The western scientific revolution promoted rationalization and empiricism that became the mental lens through which Japanese culture would be appraised. Scientific instruments made perceptible many traditionally invisible factors, such as temperature, atmospheric pressure and time, leading to an explosion of interest in the visible object.73 The Japanese 70  Kôjin Karatani. Origins of Modern Japanese Literature. Durham: Duke University  Press, 1993, p. 24. 71  Adams Ann Jensen. “Competing Communities in the ‘Great Bog of Europe’”. In W. J.  T. Mitchell ed. Landscape and Power. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994, p. 44. 72  Jensen Adams 1994, p. 66.  73  Timon Screech. The Western Scientific Gaze and Popular Imagery in Later Edo  Japan: the Lens Within the Heart. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996, pp. 2939  craze for the European way of seeing is particularly evident in the list of imports made by the Dutch East India Company. Looking at the remaining lists, one is immediately astonished by the number of glass-made items: drinking cups, bottles, eyeglasses, pocket watch glass covers, opera glasses, microscopes and telescopes are all recurring Japanese imports. The act of “seeing” and the various tools necessary to visually probe the nature of things became inextricably associated with the west.74 By the end of the 18th century, glass items were no longer a luxury but despite being fairly widespread they nevertheless still aroused considerable excitation. In his bestseller Tôkaidô hizakurige, Jippensha Ikku (, 1765-1831) relates the popular amazement brought by the telescope : Come and look, cried a man with a telescope. You can see all the streets of Osaka, down to the very ants crawling on the roads. […] You can see both young and old and how many pockmarks they’ve got. […] You can see ’em as wonderful as if you’d got ‘em in you hands. […] Ten thousand miles at a glance.75 Western art with its revolutionary ways of rendering objects in space provided tools to represent the visible world with a precision never reached before. This 30. 74  Martha Chaiklin. Cultural Commerce and Dutch Commercial Culture. Leiden:  Research School CNWS, 2003, p. 131. Lists of imported items, see pp. 178-197. 75  Thomas Satchell, trans. Hizakurige or Shank’s Mare. Vermont: Tuttle Company, 1960,  p. 323. 40  groundbreaking mode of vision was turned to document and question virtually every facet of human life. In its inherently political way, the western gaze scrutinized, dissected, rationalized and then objectified what entered its field of vision.76 This in turn made possible a wide discussion of the concept of “Japanesness.” Nevertheless, articulating a unified definition of “Japaneseness,” or finding its boundaries, was no easy task in a country encompassing so great a diversity of local cultures and dialects. In fact, as we have seen with the example of the Fûryû Shidôken den, many travel diaries revolved around accounts of strangeness and difference.77 Likewise, Jippensha’s famous traveler-heroes from Edo, Kita and Yaji, never stopped trying to make fun of the peculiarity of the many locals met along the Tôkaidô highway. Yet, Jippensha’s genius shows that the assumption of a cultured center and a rustic periphery does not always hold as their pedantry quite often backfires and the locals also play pranks on them.78 Rather than the locals they meet en route, Kita and Yaji become the “rutics” for not caring about local cultures besides their own. But, as Mitchell notes, “landscape doesn’t merely signify or symbolize power relations, it is an instrument of cultural power.”79 Through the process of democratization 76  Screech 1996, p. 2.  77  Marcia Yonemoto. Mapping Early Modern Japan. Space, Place, and Culture in the  Tokugawa Period (1603-1868). Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003, p. 99. 78  Satchell 1960, pp. 116-118.  79  W. J. T. Mitchell ed. Landscape and Power. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 41  of the western scientific gaze upheld by a rising number of scholars of Dutch studies, the land was detached from its classical association with literature and emerged as a new entity ready for exploration and debate.80 So the discovery of landscape made possible the association of new meanings with the land.81 Gradually, gazetteers, travel accounts, landscape pictures and maps, via their reliance on the observable qualities of the land and its subjects, started to conceive and then enforce an idea of Japan as a unified national space. The observed world, the landscape, became politically charged. If the boundaries of Japanese culture remained subject to negotiation until the end of the Tokugawa period, its center was somehow easier to find. As the greatest, most recognizable feature of the Japanese political landscape, Fuji quickly came to be the lowest common denominator of “Japaneseness” among a plurality of intellectual movements. This holds true even among members of directly conflicting ideologies. We have already seen how much Gennai despised Confucian thinkers and their devotion to China but it is to be noted that Ogyû Sorai (, 1666-1728), perhaps  the most  Sinophilic figure of Tokugawa intellectual history, was a convinced Fuji nationalist as 1994, p. 1. 80  This might also be partially explained by the fact that many scholars of rangaku were  physicians and, as such, enjoyed a greater degree of intellectual freedom than many in Tokugawa society. Terrence Jackson. “Socialized intellect: The Cultural Network of Rangaku in Late Tokugawa Japan”. Ph.D. dissertation, Indiana University, 2004, p. 37. 81  Karatani 1993, pp. 27 & 52. 42  well. In his travelogue, Fûryû shishaki (Report of the Elegant Emissaries) written in 1706, Sorai put forth a geography in which he considers Fuji as the pillar of sancticity in the universe and the center of the world.82 To parallel this in the art world, Nakabayashi Chikutô (,  1776-1853), a Nagoya-born, Kyoto-based art theorist and painter of  the Nanga tradition (further discussed below), strongly opposed western painting style. Chikutô wrote not only painting treatises but also a discussion on nationalism and, as the backbone of his theories, painted a picture of Fuji, Marvelous view of the county of the gods (1837, ,  Shinshû kikanzu, fig. 5) in which the mountain is treated as the  symbol of Japan.83 He appended the following poem to the picture:  kamiyo yori  Since the age of the Gods  takaku tafutoki  A venerable mountain in Suruga!  Suruganaru  Surely its form is our sacred country.84  yama ya mikuni no sugata naruran  82  G. Lidin Olof. “Ogyû Sorai's Place in Edo Intellectual Thought.” Modern Asian  Studies 18 (1984), pp. 573-575. 83  Kano Hiroyuki .  “”Akafuji” no fo-kuroa”  . E ha  kataru 14. Tokyo: Heibonsha, 1994, pp. 58-59. 84  ibid. The poem translation is mine.  43  Interestingly, notwithstanding his radical refusal of western painting techniques, Chikutô’s Shinshû kikanzu displays the same attention to detail one can find in Ike Taiga’s (,  -1776)  “true view“ (shinkeizu) paintings, conveying to the viewer  the sense of an existing scene. We might even venture so far as to question the influence of western perspective on this picture as the lake on the right hand side of the picture appears to be painted in such a way as to recede in space towards Fuji. Like Taiga, Chikutô was aware of the limitations of ancient painting techniques and the general state of sclerosis in the Japanese art world.85 This general understanding of Fuji as the best symbol of Japan transcended both class and geographic boundaries. Kanmei Nanmei (1744-1800), head of the Fukuoka domain school, added Fuji to the Seven Wonders of the World.86 In his broad worldview, there is little doubt that he saw Mt. Fuji as the best representative of Japan both at home and abroad. Yet, as revolutionary as the western way of seeing was, its achievements in Europe would not be enough to explain the burning interest it spurred and the speed at which it propagated among all strata of society in Japan. The western gaze entered Japan at a very sensitive moment in art history. By the 18th century, the two main Japanese schools of painting, Kano and Tosa, that had served respectively the shogunate and the 85  Ôtsuki Mikio .  Bunjin gaka no fu .  Tokyo: Pelican, 2000, p.  281. 86  ibid. p. 167. 44  court, seemed to have drained away their repertoire of imagery.87 At the same time, this impoverishment of the Tokugawa bank of symbols was exacerbated by Japan’s encounter with foreign countries whose power rested not only on very different political postulates but also made active use of visual means in state propaganda.88 In the words of Kuwayama Gyokushû (,  -1799),  the most verbal partisan of the Nanga  School and a late pupil of Taiga, Kano painters and their emphasis on copying existing works had caused “the mystery and beauty of [Japan’s] famous mountains and valley to be lost to us.”89 Similarly Shiba Kôkan notes: There are different schools of artists in Japan—Tosa, Kano and, of late, the Chinese. None of them knows how to draw Fuji. […] The Chinese style painters [(Nanga painters)] are incapable of drawing the famous mountains and celebrated scenes of Japan. They paint nameless mountains and call them landscapes (sansui). […] These painters draw mountains and water in whatever 87  Both schools were well known in Japan. Yet, generation of formulaicism—both Kano  and Tosa masters trained their pupils by making them copy works by previous masters— as well as a generalized ban on innovation caused many Japanese to lose interest in the paintings produced by artists of these schools. Screech 2000, pp. 167-168. 88  Timon Screech. The Shogun’s Painted Culture. Fear and Creativity in the Japanese  States, 1760-1829. London: Reaktion Books, 2000, p. 21. 89  Melinda Takeuchi. “’True’ Views: Taiga’s Shinkeizu and the Evolution of Literati  Painting Theory in Japan.” Journal of Asian Studies 48 (1989), p. 9. 45  way strikes them as interesting, giving free play to their brush. This is exactly the same thing as drawing a dream. […] Neither the viewer nor the man who painted the picture has the least idea of what it depicts.90 In the view of many contemporaries, Japanese painting had lost authenticity (makoto) which in the words of Norinaga created a lack of observation of natural forms and a general incapacity of painters to conceive of a picture not as a patchwork of fragmented spaces but a cohesive unit.91 According to Norinaga, this general state of dominance of “in-house rule” over truth was exemplified by Kano master Katsuyama Takushû’s justification for altering reality. In his painting The Floating Bridge at Sano, he represented the famous pontoon bridge as a fixed bridge. Soga Shôhaku, another painter working in Kyoto, was outraged at the liberty Takushû took in his representation of the scene and demanded that he fix his painting to reflect reality. Takushû refused on the grounds that the painting was based on a sketch by Kano Tan’yû (, 16021674), one of the most celebrated Kano painters, and official artist to the Shogunate.92 Despite the efforts of Shen Nanping’s Nagasaki school of painters to introduce a greater degree of “realism” into Japanese art, critics regarding the compositional harmony of these pictures turned many artists who had started studying Nanping’s style, 90  Translated by French in Calvin L. French. Shiba Kôkan. Artist, Innovator, and Pioneer  in the Westernization of Japan. New York:Weatherhill, 1974, pp. 107-108. 91  Screech 2000, p. 169.  92  Screech 2000, p. 143. 46  including Gyokushû, Shozan and Kôkan, towards other possibilities of pictorial representation. Cohesion and realism became the focus of the debate on painting. The west offered a promising solution, that of pictorial depiction that was both uniform and accurate. Yet, at the same time, these modern discoveries on the part of the west came out of a very different cultural and historical background and so had to be translated into a local cultural language before the Japanese could successfully absorb their own landscape93. We shall now turn to the Japanese adoption of the western gaze and look at the influence of this pictorial revolution on representations of Mt. Fuji. 3.1: Towards landscape paintings: Ike Taiga The first artist who tried to address both these issues of visual cohesion and “realism” was Ike Taiga. Born in Kyoto, Taiga started his artistic carrier as a craftsman town-painter (machi-eshi) producing fans and lanterns for the new, rising commoner market. His more regular customers seem to have consisted of a group of local intellectuals with a common interest in Chinese culture; it is therefore no surprise that the artist sought from a very early age to acquire fluency in Chinese-style painting, especially that of the Chinese literati (Nanga, also called bunjinga).94 According to the Chinese literati painters, the value of a painting of a particular scene should be judged according 93  Nobuko Fujioka. “Vision or Creation? Kojima Usui and the Literary Landscape of the  Japanese Alps.” Comparative Literature Studies 39 (2002), p. 284. 94  Melinda Takeuchi. Taiga’s True Views. The Language of Landscape Painting in  Eighteen-Century Japan. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992, p. 2. 47  to the degree to which the painter, after direct observation, has captured the real essence of this particular place.95 These paintings came to be called “true view” pictures (, shinkeizu) and the term first appeared in Japan, in a multivolume set of woodblock prints by Kawamura Minesetsu, Hundred views of Mt. Fuji (Hyaku Fuji).96 After his reputation had been established in and around the imperial capital, Taiga’s interest in travel, owed to the bunjin tradition, pushed him to leave his hometown in 1748 to voyage northwards, stopping along the way at numerous famous places including Mt. Fuji, Nikkô, and then sojourning in Edo.97 Perhaps due to his interest in botany, during his visit to Edo, Taiga was introduced by Hattori Nankaku to Noro Genjô (, 1693-1761),  a scholar of  Dutch studies and honzôgakusha serving the bakufu. Noro had translated for the government one of the first books on Dutch botany (,  Horanda honzô  95  Takeuchi 1989, p. 3.  96  Takeuchi 1989, p. 10.  97  Travel was a popular pastime in the Edo period, especially for literati painters who  tried to emulate the Chinese ideal of the liberated man, that is someone who could refresh his soul by direct communication with nature. Takeuchi 1983, p. 155. It was also necessary for these artists to study nature in all its forms through direct observation in order to get inspiration for new paintings. Dianne T. Ooka. “Ike no Taiga: Paintings in the Collection.” Philadelphia Museum of Art Bulletin 66 (1971), p. 33. 48  wage, A Dutch herbal in Japanese).98 The artist gave Noro a painting demonstration and in return Noro showed Taiga western pictures. While in Edo, Taiga might have also visited the hugely famous Temple of the Five Hundred Arhats (,  Gohyaku  Rakanji). Founded as a branch of the Zen temple Manpukiji, with which Taiga had special ties, the temple was a center of Chinese learning in Edo and one of the city’s main touristic attractions.99 The temple also offered one of the most celebrated views of Mt. Fuji in the city, immortalized by such a prominent artist as Katsushika Hokusai (fig 6).100 In addition, the temple was also famous for its permanent display of western images. 98  Takeuchi 1992, p. 117.  99  Timon Screech. “The Strangest Place in Edo. The Temple of the Five Hundred  Arhats.” Monumenta Nipponica 48 (1993), pp. 409-410. Taiga made his debut at Manpukuji and his artistic inclination as well as his early connections can be attributed to the attention he received very early on at the temple. See Melinda Takeuchi. “Ike Taiga: A Biographical Study.” Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies 43 (1983), pp. 148-149. Manpukuji was the most important center of Chinese learning near Kyoto. The original policy of the temple was that only Chinese priests could be nominated to the abbacy (thus preserving its Chinese heritage) but the rule was later relaxed. Michel Mohr. “Zen Buddhism during the Tokugawa Period.” Japanese Journal of religious Studies 21 (1994), p. 364. 100  See for example, Hokusai’s 100 views of Mt. Fuji (Rakanji no Fuji) as well as his 36  views of Mt Fuji series (Gohyaku rakanji sazaedô). 49  Shogun Yoshimune had ordered five oil paintings from the Dutch East India Company (VOC) in 1722 but quickly gave at least two for exhibition in the temple. By 1735, a member of the VOC visiting Rakanji, identified the two western paintings on permanent display at the temple as the ones ordered by the shogun.101 Needless to say, these pictures attracted a lot of attention among Japanese painters, who went en masse to make copies; even the more conservative representatives of the bunjinga tradition found words of praise for these European oils. Nakayama Kôyô (, 1717-1780),  an Edo-based  bunjin painter usually opposed to western depiction techniques, noted in his Gadan keiroku (, 1775)  after visiting Rakanji that “the Dutch beat everyone in copying  the forms of life.”102 Interestingly, Taiga received a commission to paint the 500 arhats on sliding doors from Manpukuji in 1756 (fig 7).103 In any case, the sum of Taiga’s interest in empirical studies, particularly botany, and his first experience climbing Mt. Fuji, led the painter towards an interest in landscape and reinforced his beliefs in the practice of sketching from life. Indeed, as Taiga’s adoption of the nom de plume “Pilgrim of the Three Peaks” (Sangaku dôga) after his first encounter with Japan’s greatest peaks suggests, his spiritual fascination with mountains, especially with Fuji, would prove to be a major source of inspiration in his  101  Screech 1993, p. 425.  102  Screech 1993, p. 428.  103  Ôtsuki 2000, p. 226. 50  life.104 Taiga went back to Fuji at least two other times during his life, in 1760 and the following year as well. Following a practice increasingly common among traveling artists and intellectuals, Taiga kept and illustrated a diary during the 1760 excursion.105 His 1760’s Excursion to the Three Peaks named after the goal of the participants to climb Japan’s three holy peaks—Hakusan, Takeyama and Fuji—was prompted by a discussion about Fuji. Taiga and his friends were so moved by their exchange that they left on the spot to study in great depth the vegetation on the mountains and record subtle changes in landscape over the seasons.106 From his extensive travel sketches, Taiga derived many “true view” pictures, of which roughly half are pictures of Mt. Fuji, such as the series Fuji in the twelve months (1762-63, fig 8), a set he organized according to the traditional yamato-e theme of the twelve months (tsubinami-e). These paintings characterize the combination of empirical studies with the literary sensibility so important to the bunjinga tradition. Taiga’s interest in the field of honzôgaku is evident in the great precision with which he distinguishes the variety of physical environments at the base of the mountain. Some of the scenes depict easily identifiable existing places; others, because of the meticulous attention given to 104 105  Takeuchi 1992, p. 16. This particular inclination was shared by Hokusai as well. Shiba Kôkan and Tani Buncho also wrote and illustrated travel diaries. Hayashi  Razan, Arai Hakuseki and Ogyû Sorai wrote travel diaries as well. 106  Fujisan no bungaku, bijutsu, iseki .  Fuji no kenkyu  4. Tokyo: Meicho shuppan, 1973, p. 61. 51  rendering these scenes, give the impression of existing views but the scene does not physically exist.107 We should also note that, following a new practice he established with his painting of Mt. Asama (True view of Mt. Asama, , fig 9),  Taiga also  painted the sky in blue, a sharp departure from Japanese conventions that was most likely inspired by western pictures. Yet, while giving a certain sense of “realism,” these paintings are still greatly influenced by medieval poetic and religious traditions. The elongated form of the mountain and the representation of the top of Fuji as having three peaks are references to yamato-e painting conventions; the seasonal motifs associated with the mountain mostly derive from classical poetry associations between particular months and settings. In fact, many of Taiga’s settings appear in medieval poetic codices.108 Gyokushû once wrote that “with the appearance of Taiga, the true forms of our country’s celebrated mountains […] have at last begun to appear in paintings.”109 Yet for literati painters, pure, true visual realism belonged to the world of “vulgar [and] evil demons.”110 Thus, despite Taiga’s genuine attempt to find a new way of looking at his land, especially Mt. Fuji, he could not free himself from the idea of the landscape as merely a vehicle and not an end in itself. Taiga’s shinkeizu are fine visual statements 107  Takeuchi 1992, p. 62.  108  Takeuchi 1992, pp. 103 & 106.  109  Takeuchi 1989, p. 24.  110  Takeuchi 1989, p. 13. 52  about his own experience but they remain subjective views that both demanded a literarily knowledgeable artist for production and a learned viewer for appreciation. This stance was problematic on two different levels for the partisans of western-style painting. First, because of the room left in the bunjin tradition for free interpretation during the translation process of a panorama into a picture, the resulting image did not mirror reality (see the Kôkan quote above). At the same time, vernacularization of knowledge seems to have been a central concern for pro-western painting figures in general. Kôkan advocated writing in the common language instead of the more widely used sinified version of Japanese (kanbun).111 He also wrote in an easy to understand style, giving much practical advice to students aspiring to learn western painting techniques. So it should not come as a surprise that, for the likes of Kôkan, the degree of learning presupposed for a correct appreciation of bunjinga betrayed one of the most fundamental functions of picture making, that is the ability to communicate via nonverbal means to as wide an audience as possible regardless of language differences or educational background.112 111  French 1974, p. 145. Satake Shozan wrote two paining treatises, one in kanbun and  one in the vernacular. The topics and information covered in both treatises are quasi identical so it likely that Shozan’s intent in writing a “translation” of his treatise in the common language was to disseminate information among the lower social classes for whom reading it in kanbun would either have been difficult or outright impossible. 112  Naruse Fujio .  Shiba Kôkan shôgai to gagyô .  2 53  Kôkan, as if to prove his point, painted a remake of Taiga’s shinkeizu of the famous Minô waterfalls (1744, fig 10). Taiga’s rendering of the scene, while loosely based on the actual topography of the site, is clearly influenced by Chinese woodblock prints, from which Taiga extracted the angle of the picture and the position of the hut.113 Kôkan’s painting, executed roughly half a century later (fig 11), depicts two shrines instead of a hut and overall his description appears much more plausible. Around the same time, Kôkan also painted another view of the same waterfalls (fig 12) which exemplifies his early interest in western painting techniques as seen in the perspective applied to the stream.114 If Ike Taiga’s shinkeizu can hardly be called landscape paintings, as the term is now understood by art historians, his works can nevertheless be seen as bridging two radically different trends in Japanese topographical painting practice, that of the representation of idealized forms of landscape (sansuiga) prevalent in the middle ages and a new emerging trend greatly indebted to western stylistic techniques, that is, fûkeiga. 3.2: The advent of the western gaze: Shiba Kôkan and Mt. Fuji as a national symbol Like Gennai, Shiba Kôkan, too, was a talented polymath whose long list of accomplishments includes introducing and spreading the concept of the heliocentric vols. Tokyo: Yasaka Shobô, 1995, honbunron, pp. 187 & 190. 113  Takeuchi 1992, p. 9.  114  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 45. 54  planetary system in Japan, the creation of the first copperplate engraving and the democratization of western painting. As we will see, he also wrote and published extensively, hoping his ideas would reach the greatest possible number of people. Although western scientific advances fascinated him, Kôkan was by vocation a painter. He started his artistic training by studying Chinese painting under Sô Shiseki (, 1715-1786),  an Edo-based Nanban artist and friend of Hiraga Gennai interested  in western painting who produced a number of illustrations for the latter’s successful bussankai catalogues.115 It is highly possible that it is through the introduction of Sô Shiseki that Kôkan met Gennai for the first time, most likely after Gennai’s return from his long trip to Nagasaki and the Kamigata region (1769-1772).116 Gennai’s charisma, vast knowledge of the west and strong views on painting triggered in Kôkan a desire to study western art and technology. The generalized need by all rangaku scholars for painters able to duplicate and create western-style illustration for scientific purpose also certainly contributed to Gennai’s interest in recruiting young and promising painters who could research western painting techniques.117 Yet, if Gennai is to be credited for Kôkan’s interest in the west it is impossible to credit him for teaching Kôkan how to paint in the western manner beyond very basic instruction. Gennai was not a painter. The only painting existing today that can be attributed to him (Seiyô fujinzu, fig 115  Naruse Fujio . Satake Shozan . Kyoto: Ninerva, 2004, p. 19.  116  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 83.  117  Naruse 2004, p. 95. 55  13) falls far short of being a masterpiece; it shows rather than practical skills, an interest in western depiction techniques. We are therefore forced to look elsewhere to find Kôkan’s source of practical knowledge. As we have already seen, Odano Naotake had followed Gennai back to Edo to officially become one of his students and research western painting as well as copperplate engraving. Odano Naotake already had some practical experience with western painting by the time Kôkan joined Gennai’s circle and records show that he took over the practical side of Kôkan’s painting education.118 Naotake, who had been first trained in the Kano school, studied Nanga painting with Sô as well. Early Akita Ranga paintings display this multiple cultural heritage. The picture Takazu (, fig 14)  exemplifies these  transitional images: the subject is typical of the Kano school, the general composition is inspired by Chinese paintings but the rendering of the background landscape is clearly European. This cultural mix is visible also in Kôkan’s early works as the artist starts to experiment with chiaroscuro and linear perspective in his woodblock prints.119 Even more to the point, in his Kôkan hahazô (, 1781, fig 15),  the artist used western  shading techniques to give volume to his mother’s kimono, but the rendering of the tree in the background stays faithful to the techniques learned from Sô Shiseki.120 Gradually, however, Naotake started to abandon Chinese painting techniques 118  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 93.  119  French 1974, p. 80.  120  Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 74. 56  and his later paintings are free from these early influences. In his picture of Mt. Fuji (Fujigakuzu, fig 16), the perspective is no longer forced using an enlarged foreground element and appears thus much more natural. The picture’s rendering is done in small strokes much like a copperplate print. These later paintings had a lasting influence on Kôkan who painted a number of copies of Naotake’s works over his lifetime. His painting of Enoshima (Enoshima fuji bôenzu , fig 17),  executed  towards the end of his life sometime in the early 1800s, is very clearly based on Naotake’s depiction of the same scene in his Enoshimazu (, fig 18).  121  Indeed,  the sense of open space characteristic of Kôkan’s western-style paintings can certainly be explained by his exposure to Dutch compositions as well as a rejection of the flatness of Kano and Chinese paintings.122 But it is also, I think, a visible heritage from Naotake’s later landscape paintings. Kôkan’s involvement with members of the Akita Ranga School was not limited to Naotake. He also knew Shozan personally and collaborated with him to create paintings such as a set of two scrolls depicting a western man and women (Seiyô danjo zu, fig 19) in which Kôkan executed the figures and Shozan the background.123 Shozan’s painting theories also provided most of the ideas Kôkan discussed in his own treatise on  121  Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 293.  122  French 1974, p. 42.  123  Johnson 2005, p. 143. 57  western painting, Seiyô gadan (, 1799).  124  Unfortunately, Gennai’s untimely death in 1779 brought Kôkan’s involvement with the Akita Ranga School to an early end. Naotake was forced to return to Akita and died shortly thereafter. Shozan, perhaps wishing to avoid tarnishing his name through Gennai’s crime (he killed a business associate), distanced himself from both Naotake and Kôkan. The school survived for a short while in Akita through Naotake’s son and a few retainers of the domain but it never regained the drive it had while Gennai was alive.125 By the early 19th century, the school had died out, leaving Kôkan the task of spreading western painting in Japan and piercing the mysteries of European lithography. But even more than the impact on Kôkan’s painting career through his introduction to Naotake, his encounter with Gennai had profound repercussions on Kôkan’s beliefs. First, as can be gathered from Kôkan’s writing, the two knew each other well. In Shunparo hikki (, 1811)  in a section labeled “about Hiraga Gennai,”  the painter gives precise accounts of Gennai’s career. Kôkan discusses his mentor’s accomplishments and success as a botanist and writer of kyôgen, his involvement in mining, the creation of the erekiteru (a static electricity generator) and the reason why he became a rônin. He also illustrates Gennai’s love for western books with an anecdote and 124  Naruse 2004, p. 87. A comprehensive comparison of the two works can be found in  Naruse 1995, honbunron, pp. 187-200. 125  Hiroko Johnson. Western Influences on Japanese Art. The Akita Ranga Art School  and Foreign Books. Amsterdam: Hotei Publishing, 2005, p. 93. 58  gives Gennai’s address when they met.126 In his treaty on Western painting (Seiyô gadan) Kôkan relates: When I was young, I heard from Hiraga Gennai that formerly, the Dutch had brought to Japan several hundreds of copperplate prints from their country, showed them to the Japanese and tried to sell them. The people’s way of thinking at the time was so shallow they did not think these were marvelous rarities and returned these prints quickly to the Dutch.127 This not only shows how well Kôkan knew Gennai, his life and writings, but also could indicate that Gennai might have encouraged Kôkan to research a method of copperplate printing.128 As we have seen, Gennai did not directly teach painting to Kôkan but through their close interaction, he successfully passed on his rebel spirit and political activism. Indeed, Kôkan can rightfully be given the title of Gennai’s spiritual successor.129 Like Gennai, he criticized the unequal social system of the Tokugawa days. It is worth noting here that the intellectual atmosphere in which Kôkan grew, that of the Edo rangaku 126  Haga Tôru .  Sugita  .  Genpaku,  Hiraga Gennai, Shiba Kôkan  Nihon no meicho 22.  Tokyo:  chûôkôronsha, 1971, pp. 425-426. 127  Haga 1971, p. 477. The translation is mine.  128  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 82.  129  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 87. 59  salons, must also have served as a demonstration of the practical feasibility of equal class interaction. These salons regrouped members from all origins from the most humble to the highest (Kôkan was a commoner, and the salons were also attended by daimyô, for example, Matsuura Seizan of Hirado), who interacted as social equals.130 In Shunparo hikki he writes: “In this country, no matter how gifted you are, if you are born into a house of merchant, artisan or farmer, your status is low and you cannot use your talents for the sake of the country. Even if you are talented, because of your status not only are you prevented from putting your talents in the service of our country, but you are also looked upon as a foolish commoner.”131 And later in a different section: At the top [of our society] there is the emperor, then the shogun and underneath, samurai, farmer, artisans, merchants and the outcasts. Down to the most humble, they are all human beings. […] They were all born from the land and water of Earth and all have feelings. […] If one looks down upon a person of lower status, only pain is born from it, no happiness at all. […] [This pain] is born from the desire for honors and greed but if one discards this greed, then one’s heart should be at ease.132 130  Terrence Jackson. “Socialized intellect: The Cultural Network of Rangaku in Late  Tokugawa Japan”. Ph.D. dissertation, Indiana University, 2004, pp. 15 & 31. 131  Haga 1971, p. 455. The translation is mine.  132  Haga 1971, pp. 459-460. The translation is mine. 60  Like Gennai, Kôkan advocated the opening of Japan to foreign trade, particularly with Russia in order to maintain the price of rice: “for now the price of rice is low so the warriors are not thriving, is it not foolish to think of not trading with Russia?”133 He also firmly condemned the way Russian ambassadors were treated by the Japanese government: “the Russians must surely think now that all the Japanese are beasts!”134 Following in the footsteps of his mentor, Kôkan also asserted his will to serve his motherland and discusses the benefit of the country (kokueki) in several places, especially in relation to the use of pictures as a national tool: “like written characters, pictures should not be used for fun, it would be a loss for the country.”135 Looking at how much Gennai’s thought influenced Shiba Kôkan, it should not come as a surprise that the two men also shared very similar views on Mt. Fuji and the function the celebrated mountain should hold in Japan. 3.2.1: Kôkan and Mt. Fuji Like Gennai, Kôkan held Mt. Fuji in high esteem. For Gennai, Fuji was the greatest mountain in the world, as it was for Kôkan, “Mt. Fuji is a mountain unique to Japan” and “the famous mountain in Japan.”136 His awe of the mountain was such that he 133  Haga 1971, pp. 464-465. The translation is mine.  134  ibid. The translation is mine.  135  Haga 1971, pp. 429-430. The translation is mine.  136  Haga 1971, pp. 428-429. The translation is mine. 61  devoted an entire section of his Shunparo hikki to it: What is peculiar to my country is Mt. Fuji. It is always winter on top of this mountain and regardless of season, the snow on its peak does not disappear. During the summer only its peak is covered in snow but at the slightest cold, the snow starts to fall on the mountain and the view is priceless. I do not recommend looking at Fuji from within the Suruga province but from a distance of 20 or 30 ri, the mountain appears enormous. I do not recommend looking at the scenery from a low land either. The shape of this mountain is unique all over the world. The place called Motoichiba is where white sake is sold and at the same place they also sell pictures of Fuji carved into wooden planks. These are hanging in a little bit of an awkward way but the Dutch on their way to Edo bought several of these images. This mountain was already erupting before the age of the Gods and over several thousand years, the volcano blew sand in all four directions finally growing to the shape it has nowadays. Till the time when I was a young boy, there was smoke rising from its peak but now it has stopped. The mountaintop existed before the creation of the world when the universe was still shaped like a wave and it was the only mountain in the universe. It is best to look at the mountain from afar. One should not climb Fuji. More than things that do not exist anymore like the spear Amanosakahoko, one should be moved and praise Mt. Fuji. This is why I, too, have painted this mountain already a number of 62  times. Since I paint images of Mt Fuji using western painting techniques, if one looks at my pictures, one can be reminded of the way in which the sun shining on the snow makes it glow like silver as well as the way in which the snow stays or disappears from the many irregularities of the mountain and the way in which Mt. Fuji exhales clouds.137 There are several important elements in this passage that outline Kôkan’s views on Mt. Fuji. For him, there was a right way to look at the mountain (from a particular distance etc…) and a particular way of representing it, as Fuji must be translated pictorially as faithfully as possible to its natural form. For him, the only way to convey the greatness of the mountain was through western-style painting: “if foreigners were to see Fuji, it would have to be in pictures. But, if this picture did not resemble the mountain the purpose of the picture would not be reached. The way to represent an object truthfully is western painting.”138 As mentioned earlier, the mid- to late-Edo period was characterized by a strong desire to look for the reality of Japan.139 Kôkan too was looking for a way to define “Japaneseness.” His reference to Amanosakahoko, the mythical spear used by the gods Izanagi and Izanami to create the Japanese archipelago, is echoed by his general views on 137  Haga 1971, pp. 439-440. The translation is mine.  138  Haga 1971, pp. 429-430. The translation is mine.  139  That is, the exact features of the land, its various resources, what products were  manufactured and where, the particular characteristics of regional culture, etc… 63  kokugaku. “Speaking of kokugaku, there are people who investigate the old ways of Japan. […] They write using ancient words that have a certain grace but for people who cannot read these old words it is gibberish.”140 The ultimate goal of kokugaku was to recover an original, pure Japanese sensibility free from foreign influence in order to address Japan’s problem of cultural cohesion. But for Kôkan, looking to a distant past for solutions to a current problem was a waste of time. Instead of devoting energy to recreate a past that was long gone, he proposed to turn his contemporaries’ attention towards Fuji. Ultimately, as Kôkan and later Aizawa Seishisai (, 1782-1863)  rightfully  perceived, the very disparity between rhetoric and reality present in the nativist discourse (among others) would have to be addressed and it is precisely this awareness that pushed Japan gradually towards the adoption of the western nation-state model.141 Finding a means to define Japan was a pressing problem to which a great many, inside and outside the governing sphere, devoted their lifetime. Matsudaira Sadanobu (, 1758-1829),  who succeeded Tanuma to the highest position of the shogunate,  used his authoritarian position to probe the limits of his country’s territorial and cultural boundaries in order to fabricate a cultural bond that would bind Japan’s politically fragmented space together.142 On the cultural level, Sadanobu ordered copies of all the 140  Haga 1971, p. 434. The translation is mine.  141  Bob Tadashi Wakabayashi. Anti-Foreignism and Western Learning in Early-modern  Japan. The New Theses of 1825. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1986, p. 140. 142  Screech 2000, p. 17. 64  important artworks in his land. He also was himself an avid collector of fragments of Japanese cultural heritage, down to keeping broken tiles of old temples. With this policy Sadanobu intended to create a sort of repository of a commonly shared cultural heritage. As a result, from 1789 to 1804 he issued in 85 volumes his Collected Antiquities in Ten Categories (Shûko jisshu, ).  The last category alone, regrouping copies of  ancient pictures, put 2600 reproductions in circulation within the Japanese public sphere. With this massive publication enterprise, Sadanobu’s aim was to put at the disposition of every Japanese a summary of Japan’s material culture, a sort of encyclopedia of “Japaneseness” that people could buy and keep at home.143 Sadanobu too, like Kôkan, whose works he knew, was keenly aware of the power of pictures. He also ordered many surveys of the land, always appointing a painter to the expedition team. Interestingly, the tangible result of Sadanobu’s surveys was not the building of forts to protect the land from foreign invasion or keeping those inside from slipping outside the realm’s borders. The concrete result of these surveys was the creation of images of a particular kind, that is, landscape paintings. For example, the 1793 coastal survey was immortalized in Moriyama Takamori’s paintings in which Mt Fuji repea.tedly appears in an attempt to imbue the landscape with its cultural authority.144 Sadanobu also commissioned landscape paintings from the Nanga painter Tani Bunchô (, 17631840), who built a reputation as a realist painter able to render true-to-life topographic 143  Screech 2000, pp. 42 & 254.  144  Screech 2000, p. 35. 65  scenes (see fig 20). Martin Warnke discussing war landscape writes that “to the commander, the landscape is just a map given concrete form, just as a map is a landscape converted for operational use.”145 It is precisely because Sadanobu (who was in charge of Japan’s military defence) and Kôkan were interested in the reality of their country and wanted to find a tangible way to bind Japan’s politically and culturally fragmented territory that they turned their attention to the power of landscape paintings. These images were as much for Sadanobu as for Kôkan political tools to foster cultural integration. 3.2.2: The iconography of power In his monograph on Dutch studies, Grant Goodman proposes that “rangaku […] was never a ‘grassroots’ movement and did not reflect any demands from below.”146 Yet, Kôkan was perfectly aware that his country was divided: “in my country, Japan, the nature of people in the east and in the west is different.”147 These divisions created tension among the citizenry and prevented Japan from reaching the level of achivements (political, cultural and also economic) enjoyed by her western counterparts. Kôkan, as much as Sadanobu, strove to provide a solution to this divide for the sake of his country, 145  Martin Warnke. Political Landscape. The Art History of Nature. London: Reaktion  Books, 1994, p. 59. 146  Grant K. Goodman. Japan and the Dutch 1600-1853. Richmond: Curzon Press, 2000,  p. 7. 147  Haga 1971, p. 461. The translation is mine. 66  for the sake of all Japanese. Through his research, visual and otherwise, Kôkan deduced that the kind of political unity displayed by European nations was based on spiritual consensus. Much as contemporary Europeans used the East to call attention to problems at home, in Oranda tsûhaku (, 1805)  Kôkan describes France as a marvelous country which,  through its use of modern science, had achieved an ideal state of government that cultivated spiritual unity among its citizenry: French people are kindhearted and polite, and many display great interest in astronomy, surveying and physics. They are also courageous, and always maintain an army prepared for any emergency, but are careful to avoid war by treating others with extreme courtesy. Therefore, France deserves to be the great cultured nation she is. Both the high- and low-born work together to maintain perfect harmony in the country. In the north, on the banks of the Seine River, is the great city of Paris, where the grand and beautiful palace of the king is located. The city is 37 miles in circumference, has 17 gates, and more than 60,000 houses. There are over 100 monasteries, called “cloisters,” as well as churches both large and small. There are also asylums providing for widows and widowers, old persons without children and orphans. Each asylum has a workshop to train people to use whatever powers they have: the blind are taught to use their hands and feet, the crippled to train their eyes and ears. In this way each person learns to make to most of his ability, and none is left to become a 67  worthless person. There are institutions for children where infants are taken in, so that poverty does not force parents to desert their offspring on the street or throw them in a ditch. There are many hospitals for those who are too poor to afford medicine or who suddenly become ill while traveling. Hospitals are divided into sections for treating various illnesses, such as plague or other contagious diseases. All kinds of medicine are carefully dispensed by responsible persons, and excellent doctors in every hospital see to their patients daily. Hospitals further offer such facilities as clothing, beds, curtains, etc, and there are also nurses (generally old women.) Those who have recovered from illness are given money, clothing, and food to help them begin life anew. There are 30 of these hospitals in France. When a man finds money or anything else of value on the street, he immediately puts up a notice of what he has found on the church gate. These valuables are of course returned to the person identified as having lost them. In the event that they are unclaimed, they are offered in charity to the poor or contributed to asylums. All charitable institutions are established by the government, a practice followed in other European countries as well. From my examination of the asylum depicted in copperplate pictures brought to Japan, I have discovered that the walls are made of stone with glass set in the windows. The buildings are seven or eight stories high, and of indescribable size and  68  magnificence.148 Of course such description would have made the leaders of French Enlightenment (especially Voltaire) smile but this comparison of France with Japan allowed Kôkan to emphasize what was problematic at home—the lack of harmony among the citizenry—as well as to illustrate how this integration had been achieved in the west.149 European solidarity was fostered by the spiritual unity of the church under the leadership of a government whose symbol, the king, was made clearly visible. To reach the European level of integration, what Japan needed were symbols. During Kôkan’s lifetime, the idea that Japan had to emulate the west and gain the same kind of cohesion as its European counterparts gradually gained momentum.150 148  Translated by French in French 1974, pp. 129-130.  149  Nagasaki interpreter Yoshio Kosaku used the same technique to criticize Japanese  customs. Reporting on the life of Hollanders, he praises their compassion and benevolence, as well as their moral conduct. Similarly to Kôkan’s account of life in France, Yoshio also noted the Dutch reverence for their king and their freedom in choosing a field of study (this leeway was in sharp contrast with Japanese hereditary practices). Goodman 2000, pp. 71-72. 150  Mito scholars Fujita Yûkoku (, 1774-1826)  (, 1834-1901) reached  and later Fukuzawa Yukichi  a conclusion very similar to Kôkan’s. Yûkoku proposed  that the ruler of Japan must win popular unity and integration. Fukuzawa concluded that since modern western nations derived their strength from a spiritual source, Japan, too, 69  Through western images and encounters with western political apparatus, actors in the early-modern Japanese public sphere started to conceive concepts of national sovereignty and territorial integrity.151 It is Aizawa Seishisai (1782-1863) who first articulated the link between culture, spirituality and politics in a comprehensive discussion, his New Theses (Shinron, ), published  in 1825 just a few years after Kôkan’s death. Although  these men were in disagreement over the place the west should occupy in Japan, they shared a striking number of similarities in their approach to the problem of Japanese political integration. In New Theses, Aizawa advances the idea that the Japanese spiritual void needs to be filled in order to unite the people: “Barbarian leaders seduce their people into spiritual unity. […] Can we rely on restrictive traditional policies, policies designed to weaken the realm and make commoners ignorant?”152 He also recognized that the basis of European nation-states were western cultural advancements that enabled the ruler to mobilize his subjects spiritually towards a common national goal. He called this popular unity and allegiance “kokutai” (national polity). In order to create a Japanese kokutai, Aizawa realized the division between classes had to be at least partially abolished. Japan had to acquire the spirit of western civilization. Maeno Ryôtaku, physician to the lord of Tango and otherwise well-known Edo rangakusha who worked with Sugita Gempaku on the publication of the celebrated anatomy treaties kaitaishinsho (, 1774),  went  as far as discussing the idea of electing a leader. Wakabayashi 1986, pp. 54 & 106. 151  Wakabayashi 1986, p. 8.  152  Wakabayashi 1986, p. 180. 70  had no need for a specialized military class dissociated from the land. To compensate for a drastic diminution in the number of samurai, Aizawa proposed the creation of a popular army.153 Through a move to ease Japanese social stratification and establish a merit-based society, Aizawa called for the creation of a wider base of active citizens who would be made into the recipients of his kokutai. But Aizawa, as a member of the samurai who valued Confucian morality, was devoted to the preservation of the existing bakuhan system. He sought to strengthen the existing political status quo based on the idea that the ruler acts and governs in the name of heaven. In doing so, the ruler was responsible for educating his subjects. In order to unify Japanese policy and its subjects, Aizawa needed an historical validation for his theory and naturally turned to the Japanese nativist mytho-history focusing on the emperor and his relation to the realm of divinity. With this move, he linked Confucian principles of benevolence/compassion and the ruler’s duty to educate the masses to the purpose of the imperial line in Japan. This new amalgamation in turn allowed Aizawa to transform Confucian morality into religious duty to the emperor. The emperor serves and obeys his divine forefathers, and his subjects in return serve and respect the emperor: “if the whole country reveres the heavenly duties [of filial piety and loyalty], then all will know how to respect the emperor.”154 Since the bakufu was serving the emperor, this 153  H.D. Harootunian. Towards Restoration. The growth of Political Consciousness in  Tokugawa Japan. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1970, pp. 102 & 113. 154  Harootunian 1970, p. 116. 71  move would not only secure mass allegiance to the emperor and his shogunal appointee but also unite all four classes. Aizawa also proposed the creation of national shrines where Japanese subjects could offer their respects to the emperor and through him to the gods of the land in order to propagate this new unity between past and present, ruler and ruled. In short, Aizawa asserted that the only way for Japan to become a modern nation was to create a national body using the emperor as a spiritual father to all Japanese. The practical implication of Aizawa’s theory was to put the emperor on public display (like a European monarch) so that the bakufu could exploit the imperial house’s mystical qualities and through the power of rituals instill a sense of reverence for the emperor in every citizen. In other words, Aizawa proposed a complete reversal of the Japanese policy of representation of power. For hundreds of years, both the shogun and the emperor had practiced a politic of absence. It was precisely because they were never seen that their aura of power existed. Yet, because of their invisibility, they could not embody the identity of the state. Making the emperor visible was Aizawa’s response to the Japanese need for a national symbol. If for Aizawa the figure of the emperor imposed itself as the national symbol of Japan, for Kôkan, the answer was to be found elsewhere. Not only because he inherited Gennai’s interest in Mt. Fuji but also because, as a painter, he was deeply influenced by Dutch imagery, not least landscape painting, Kôkan found a solution to the lack of national symbols in the tangibility and immutability of the land. Western painting was the 72  only way to disseminate his findings precisely because it allowed for a realistic pictorial translation of a philosophical quest for the reality of “Japaneseness.” It also enabled Kôkan to make a visual postulate about cohesion: wouldn’t cohesion in the picture plane encourage cohesion in the realm? Innovative painting methods were not the only things to be discovered in western images. There was more at work in these images. Kôkan soon realized why European art contributed so much to the high level of cultural achievement in the west.155 Since he knew the Dutch taught morality through the use of symbols, this contribution he felt had to be related to the importance of icons in European artwork. In the lord of Kii’s library, Kôkan also tumbled upon one of the rare works of European fiction available in Japan at the time, Aesop’s Fables. Apparently, he was so fascinated by the narration’s use of symbols for teaching purpose that he translated a few of these stories into Chinese and even wrote some of his own.156 Honda Toshiaki (, 1744-1820),  another rangaku  scholar contemporary with Kôkan, was also struck by the importance of symbols in western culture. Looking at a Russian map he writes, “there are human figures on this map. The woman is the empress Ekaterina. There is also the letter E with plants sprouting from it like an aureole. This must mean that the light of virtue is cast on the four continents from the letter E. The four nude figures each represent a continent, and this  155  French 1974, p. 77.  156  Donald Keene. The Japanese Discovery of Europe. London: Routledge, 1952, p. 95. 73  means that all the continents will in the future belong to Russia.”157 Therefore, there is little doubt that Kôkan was aware of the didactic of pictures and must have seen how much Europe made use of visuals for political propaganda. He must also have realized that one of the early functions of landscape paintings was to provide evidence of ownership.158 Kôkan’s landscape paintings were inspired by these European accomplishments and their message was clear: the Japanese people commonly owned Mt. Fuji, making it into the national symbol of Japan. 3.2.3: Kôkan’s Fuji propaganda As one might expect from the true heir of Gennai’s intellectual heritage, Kôkan too had a rather high opinion of his value to Japan. He considered himself as a sort of prophet of western painting and an enlightened man working towards the modernization of his country.159 Consequently, he naturally thought of teaching his contemporaries what he had discovered studying western science and media. In fact, his attention to popular education comes as a recurrent theme through most of his writings. Kôkan (and Honda Toshiaki) advocated a simplification of written expression, privileging kana over kanji and the vernacular over Chinese so that a wider portion of the population could gain access to knowledge. Honda even went a step further and  157  Translated by Keene in Keene 1952, p. 87.  158  Warnke 1994, p. 53.  159  French 1974, pp. 84-85. 74  prescribed the adoption of the western script in Japan.160 Both criticized the barrier to dissemination and assimilation of knowledge that came as a byproduct of the widespread use of Chinese to write scholarly books. Kôkan was therefore very attentive to writing for the general public. He wrote in an easy-to-understand style; he also printed copies of his books until the woodblocks wore out and then made more.161 Via his exposure to western imagery and its didactic use, Kôkan became aware of the educational power of pictures. In Shunparo hikki, Kôkan writes: “people without distinction of rank enjoy pictures and color pictures are especially easy to understand for unrefined persons (zokujin.)”162 And in Seiyô gadan he explains: ”pictures are used like writing in works like botanical books. This is because, if one does not illustrate these books, how could anyone understand the real shape of these plants?”163 Unsurprisingly, Honda too recommended images as the best medium for popular education.164 At the same time, Kôkan did not think highly of the Japanese masses, which comforted him in his self-appointed duty to enlighten the populace: “it is my understanding that lower class citizens are primarily naïve and unsophisticated—peasants  160  Goodman 2000, p. 197.  161  French 1974, p. 145.  162  Haga 1971, p. 248. The translation is mine.  163  Haga 1971, p. 476. The translation is mine.  164  Keene 1952, p. 88. 75  and the like are all stupid (oroka.)”165 “Peoples’ hearts are easily moved. If they read a book of poems, they want to make poems too. If they see a book, they want to write too. If they hear a travel account, they too want to see the neighboring regions.”166 While on travels, Kôkan frequently shared his knowledge in the hope of educating his compatriots; in Saiyû nikki he relates the following episode: “September 10 […] I took my map of the world and explained it. […] I said that the world is spherical, that there are many other globes like ours in space, that the space between globes is what we call the sky, and no living person can fly through this space unless he becomes a deity.”167 As I have mentioned already earlier, the Edo-period boom in commercial printing as well as the growing participation of Japanese citizens in discussing issues related to state-making created an audience for Kôkan’s message.168 “Seeing” was no longer the privilege of a literary educated elite and thus Kôkan endeavored to advertise his message, to educate this new and rising audience. Following the example of European landscape painters—particularly Dutch painters—he sought to represent a key landmark in a way that imparts a political message to the public.169 165  Haga 1971, p. 458. The translation is mine.  166  Haga 1971, p. 433. The translation is mine.  167  Translated by French in French 1974, p. 121.  168  Berry 2006, p. 18.  169  For European examples see Warnke 1994, p. 117. 76  Landscape paintings are powerful images. Twenty years after looking at one of Naotake’s paintings of the Fuji, Tegara Okamochi upon seeing the mountain with his own eyes for the first time, still recalled the painting he saw many years ago and praised its realism.170 Maybe because he was aware of the attention western paintings were getting at the Temple of the Five Hundred Arhats, Kôkan resolved to use holy grounds to propel his cause. Among the many pictures of Mt. Fuji he painted over his lifetime, Kôkan donated a number of them for permanent display in shrines and temples all over Japan. “Ever since about 25 years ago, I have realistically painted in oil, following the western manner, Japanese landscapes, starting with such excellent and famous mountains as Mt. Fuji, and hung these paintings in various region’s temples. Many refined personages have also bought my paintings and society now shows interest in my work.”171 No doubt, he was partially motivated by a mundane desire for self-promotion but I believe he also saw these donations as a good way to transmit his vision of Japan, one in which Fuji served as a national symbol, to as wide an audience as possible. Among the paintings Kôkan donated we can find a painting of Shichirigahama beach (Sôshû kamakura shichirigahamazu , 1796, fig 21), one of his favorite  sights  during the Kansei years. Kôkan gave this painting to the Atagoyama shrine in Edo where it stayed on display until 1811 when it was transferred to the Edo bookstore Seizandô.172 170  Johnson 2005, p. 147.  171  Haga 1971, p. 442. The translation is mine.  172  Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 166. 77  The picture must have drawn considerable attention. Ôta Nampo, attached the following note to the image: “this painting was previously hung in the Atagoyama Shrine south of Edo castle, but was removed because it is in the western style [of painting]; it is now owned by Seizandô. Using western techniques, Kôkan had painted this picture of Enoshima. Within the limits of a single picture he had admirably managed to confine and to catch the feeling of the long, misty, panoramic expense of beach at Shichirigahama.”173 Another pertinent example of Kôkan’s donation would be his Kisarazu Uranozu (, 1800, fig 22)  which he contributed to the Itsukushima Shrine  (Hiroshima) in 1800 where it is still kept today.174 Both paintings share one intriguing feature: in addition to Kôkan’s signature in Japanese and his seals, the painter also signed the pictures in Roman alphabet “S. a. Kookan” and added the phrase “Eerste Zonders in Japan” (first marvel of Japan) to his Kisarazu uranozu. This translation into Dutch spells out Kôkan’s motivation in making pictures of Fuji, and appears quite frequently on them (see in example, Sunshû satsuda fujisanzu , fig 23 or  Teppôzu fujienbôzu , fig 24  or again Sunshû satsuda fujienbôzu , fig 25.)  Could this indicate  that he wanted also to advertise Fuji as a national symbol to a foreign audience? Kôkan knew that the cheap prints of Fuji sold at the Tôkaidô stations were very popular among  173  Translated by French in French 1974, p. 103.  174  Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 176. 78  the Dutch, which probably helped in reinforcing his idea that the mountain was unique.175 He also seemed to take to heart how the mountain should be represented to a foreign audience. As we have seen previously, Kôkan was especially particular about the way Fuji should be represented to foreigners, that is in a pictorial technique that copies nature as truthfully as possible.176 The inclusion of foreign elements into pictures of famous Japanese landmarks was quite popular during the later part of the Edo period.177 These images were probably made as a response to a popular interest in foreign things.178 But first and foremost, they served as a tool for political propaganda, showing a certain kind of relationship between Japan and the world beyond the seas. I believe these foreign elements served to either reinforce the central, unifying, function of the bakufu, as seen in one of Kôkan’s early paintings showing two members of a Dutch envoy in front of Edo Castle (Edojô 175  Keene 1952, p. 86.  176  Haga 1971, pp. 429-430.  177  In Origins of Modern Japanese Literature, Karatani discusses the idea that the  discovery of realism through landscapes amounted to a defamiliarization of the familiar. It is this new realism that forces people to see things that, by force of habit, they did not see before. The superposition of foreign elements on Japanese landscape was therefore a way to assess the new concept of “Japaneseness”. Karatani 1993, p. 29. 178  Asakura Haruhiko  ed. Shiba Kôkan no kenkyû .  Tokyo:  Yasaka Shobô, 1994, p. 118. 79  gairanjinzu , fig 26), or  to contest it by proposing a new center, most  notably Mt. Fuji. The latter kind of images, in which envoys were contrasted with Fuji rather than the Edo Castle seem to have been far more prominent, hinting at the role the mountain took as representative of the nation. As one might expect, these pictures left a powerful impression on the Japanese masses.179 Like western painting techniques, foreign embassies to Edo through the representations they engendered and the discourse they created, helped model a modern Japanese self.180 So much so that foreign envoys became a sort of motif in later Edo art, especially in the work of Katsushika Hokusai (, 1760-1849), from whom two pictures exemplify this trend: his depictions of members of the Korean envoy in awe in front of Fuji (Fugaku hyakkei , , fig 27  Raichô no fuji  and, on the same theme, Tôkaidô gojûsantsugi no naigen  , fig 28). Ronald  Toby notes that for the Korean embassies  alone, over 100 paintings and illustrated books depicting their activities in Japan have survived to this day.181 Interestingly, western perspective was very often used in these pictures, and the “locus classicus” of Korean embassy images in Edo invariably offered a one point perspective view in which the vanishing point coincided with Mt. Fuji, drawing the viewer’s attention towards the mountain (see for example, Okamura Masanobu’s 179  Asakura 1994, p. 123.  180  Ronald P. Toby. “Carnival of the Aliens.” Monumenta Nipponica 41 (1986), pp. 415-  456 & p. 423. 181  Toby 1986, p. 417. 80  Chôsenjin raichô no zu, fig 29). Discussing a compositionally similar image by Hokusai, the woodblock print of Nihonbashi included in his series 36 views of Mt Fuji, Screech remarks that Edo Castle and Mt. Fuji are floating above the ground and seem detached from the plan drawn in perspective on which the populace is grounded: “these elements remain precisely not included in the perspective scheme: Castle and peak, creatures of an altogether grander dispensation, are shown as inaccessible. […] The populace is crushed below, the Nation and its monuments spread out above.”182 The same reading can be applied to the pictures of the Korean embassies discussed above, except that in these pictures the only national monument to be found is Fuji. Needless to say, the didactic intent of such images is clear. Mt. Fuji, representing the Japanese nation, is contrasted with the Koreans, representing what was not Japanese. Kôkan’s devotion to making a national symbol out of Mt. Fuji did not stop at the public display of his paintings. He traveled widely, including sojourns in Osaka, Nara, Hyôgo and Kyoto. While on the move, he was always happy to show his pictures and explain his own views on painting as well as lecture on world geography and astronomy.183 His activities during his seven-month stay in the imperial capital starting in the fourth month of 1812 will further illustrate Kôkan’s proactive stance. Soon after reaching Kyoto he writes, “not many people in Kyoto have looked at 182  Timon Screech. “The Meaning of Western Perspective in Edo Popular Culture.”  Archives of Asian Art 47 (1994), pp. 58-69 & p. 67. 183  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 178. 81  Fuji,  therefore  I  will  humbly  leave  many  pictures  of  Fuji 184  (.)”  here This  viewpoint might seem a little strange, since not only Ike Taiga but also Maruyama Ôkyo (, 1733-1795)  worked in Kyoto and their output included a wide number of  pictures of the famous mountain. Kôkan must have meant rather than a lack of interest, a lack of what he deemed a proper representation of Fuji, which as we have seen amounted for him to a particular way of articulating the mountain as a national symbol through western-style painting. For the demanding audience in Kyoto, Kôkan further refined his painting technique, adding subtle gradation in his images.185 A significant number of the paintings he realized in Kyoto are still extant today, and among these pictures we can find Kanayadai fugaku enbôzu , fig 30; , fig 31  Sunshû iwafuchi fujizu  and Sunshû kashiwara fujizu , fig 32.  Kôkan  noted with understandable pleasure that his painting had gained notoriety among Kyoto’s nobility. Prince Kan’in had praised one of his views of Edo.186 More importantly, one of his paintings of Mt. Fuji was presented to the emperor for review.187 Kôkan’s influence must have been broad in the imperial capital. One of his 184  Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 243. The translation is mine.  185  Asakura 1994, p. 129.  186  French 1974, p. 55.  187  French 1974, p. 51. 82  pictures even found its way onto a map of Japan engraved by Matsumoto Gengendô (, 1786-1867),  a copperplate artist whose school would be particularly active  in the Kyoto art scene from the late Edo period to the early Meiji period. It seems very natural that Gengendô and Kôkan met in Kyoto. Both shared similar interests in copperplate printing and geography. Masters able to teach the new European technique of copperplate printing were also very hard to find during the Edo period. Surely Gengendô must have noticed the presence in town of an artist of Kôkan’s reputation. His Dôsen nihon yochi zaizu printed in 1835 (fig 33) includes in the top left corner a landscape that bears striking similarities to Kôkan’s Sunshû kashiwara fujizu (Fig 32, 1812). In any event, the juxtaposition of a landscape picture of Mt. Fuji with a map of Japan is interesting on more than one level. It demonstrates a certain kind of awareness of the land, the same displayed by Dutch landscape paintings, and also through symbolic language visually links a country to a particular topographical feature. Mt. Fuji is Japan; Japan is Mt. Fuji. Finding Mt. Fuji on mid- late-Edo period maps is not surprising; inclusion of the mountain was more the norm than the exception. A quick look at any book focusing on Edo-period maps would confirm this as well as give the reader an idea of how widespread the presence of Fuji was.188 The natural monument blessed by its presence maps of the Tôkaidô (it was one of the terminal points of the road, fig 34), maps of Edo 188  See for example, Yamashita Kazumasa. .  Chizu de yomu Edo jidai  . Tokyo: Kashiwa Shobô, 1998. 83  (fig 35), general travel maps (fig 36), pamphlets reporting the damages made by the great Tôkai earthquake (fig 37), pilgrimage maps to Fuji (fig 38), maps of hot springs (fig 39), and needless to say maps of Suruga province (fig 40). According to Kären Wigen, one can see a growing amount of attention given to representation of mountains on maps over the Edo-period. Over the course of the Tokugawa era, Mt. Fuji assumed more and more prominence in the picture plane, up to eclipsing big city centers in importance. She concludes that even before the Meiji restoration, “mountains in general, and Mt. Fuji in particular, were already emerging as icons of the nation.”189 As Melinda Takeuchi notes, maps give a visible form to people’s conception of their world; they can also serve to provide an alternative view of the very political substance of a particular area and, because maps give the appearance of objectivity, they deconstruct the old and reconstruct new political and spatial conceptions.190 If the resemblance between Gengendô’s picture included in the Dôsen nihon yochi zaizu (Fig 33) and Kôkan’s view of Kashiwara (Fig 32) is not coincidental, then we can conclude that, at least in this particular occurrence, Kôkan had reached his objective of securing Mt. Fuji’s place as the national symbol of Japan. 189  Kären Wigen. “Seeing Like a Pilgrim: The Alpine Imagery of Early modern Japanese  Maps.” Agrarian Studies Forum. 2005. p. 14. Accessible online at < www.yale.edu/agrarianstudies/colloqpapers/09seeingill.pdf >. (Last accessed in June 2011). 190  Takeuchi 1992, p. 98. 84  Chapter 4: Conclusion According to H.D. Harootunian, over the course of the Edo period, the various debates held by Mito and kokugaku scholars as well as the doctrine of new religions, especially the Fujikô, emphasized the idea of “world renewal.” These developments contested what had long been the political center of Japanese culture and proposed alternate solutions.191 Both Gennai and Kôkan were born during this time period and participated in the political debates seeking to define what it meant to be Japanese. Because of their involvement with western studies, both started to import a particular European discourse of state propaganda. This tendency is particularly pronounced in Kôkan’s works. As we have seen through Gennai and Kôkan, Japan’s encounter with the west, and the field of research this encounter created in Japan, rangaku, were major factors in shaping Japanese identity. Dutch studies were at the forefront of a process of dispersion of knowledge.192 Philosophically, it provided early modern Japanese citizens an ‘other’ to whom they could compare themselves. The west also provided the visual tools through which it had solidified itself, which began to be used in Japan for much the same purpose. Western images also drew the attention of the Japanese to the use of symbol for 191  H.D. Harootunian. Towards Restoration. The growth of Political Consciousness in  Tokugawa Japan. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1970, p. XIX. 192  Terrence Jackson. “Socialized intellect: The Cultural Network of Rangaku in Late  Tokugawa Japan”. Ph.D. dissertation, Indiana University, 2004, p. 172. 85  communication in general, and more particularly to the role of symbols in political propaganda. Through his exposure to western media and his encounter with Gennai, Kôkan became acutely aware of the shortcomings of Tokugawa policy. As a man of multiple talents, he strove to provide a solution to the fragmentation of the Japanese political landscape, proposing a visual solution to a socio-cultural issue. Images of Mt. Fuji were hugely popular over the later years of Tokugawa hegemony. All the major artists of the later Edo period produced representations of the mountain. Hokusai’s series 36 views of Mt. Fuji proved so popular that he expanded the number of pictures in it, later adding an extra ten woodblock prints. In 1848, a triptych showing the shogun hunting at the base of the mountain sold 8000 copies.193 Aside from their unusual characters and interests, one of the main reasons why both Gennai and Kôkan enjoyed so huge a popularity was, I believe, their use of Fuji as a symbol of a unified Japan. Gennai became a legend while he was still alive and his Fûryû Shidôken den was reprinted up to the Meiji area. Likewise, Kôkan’s paintings were copied even during his lifetime and his Saiyô nikki (Journey to the West) was reissued as well.194 193  Conrad Totman, ed. and trans. Tokugawa Japan. The Social and Economic  Antecedents of Modern Japan. Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press, 1990, p. 185. 194  Calvin L. French. Shiba Kôkan. Artist, Innovator, and Pioneer in the Westernization  of Japan. New York:Weatherhill, 1974, p. 109 and Melinda Takeuchi. Taiga’s True Views. The Language of Landscape Painting in Eighteen-Century Japan. Stanford: 86  Both Gennai and Kôkan’s works were known to the bakufu. Sadanobu even criticized Kôkan for not passing on his knowledge of copperplate printing to any student.195 But if the master never took an apprentice, his paintings were no less influential. Hokusai modeled many of his prints after Kôkan’s pictures, including the world-famous cultural icon, The Great wave at Kanagawa (fig 41).196 Hokusai also inherited his use of the western horizon line as well as his color scheme for depicting the sky, clouds and water from Kôkan.197 This paper raises one final important question. Since the government knew Gennai and Kôkan’s publications, they must have realized how critical these were of the political status quo of the times. Intellectuals and artists had been severely punished or even sentenced to death for holding discourses or printing things much less caustic than that of Gennai. Many rangakusha, like Watanabe Kazan (, 1793-1841), or  the  people involved in giving Von Siebolt a map of Japan in 1828, experienced the dangers Stanford University Press, 1992, p. 134. 195 196  French 1974, p. 51. Matthi Forrer. “Western influence in Hokusai’s Art”. In Hokusai, ed. Calza Gian  Carlos, New York: Phaidon Press, 2003, pp. 23-31. 197  Hiroko Johnson. Western Influences on Japanese Art. The Akita Ranga Art School  and Foreign Books. Amsterdam: Hotei Publishing, 2005, p. 115 and Asakura Haruhiko ed. Shiba Kôkan no kenkyû .  Tokyo: Yasaka Shobô, 1994, p.  127. 87  of straying too far from public policy.198 Ôtsuki Nyoden writes about the Dutch scholar 198  Watanabe Kazan was imprisoned and sentenced to exile on charges of treason  because of the content of his essay Shinkiron ()  written in 1838. He originally  intended to draw the attention of high officials to the possibly disastrous consequences the application of the bakufu policy of chasing away foreign ships using firearms could have for Japan. Kazan’s original motive to write this work was the rumored arrival of a ship named Morrison, which from lack of better information, he mistook for Robert Morrison, an English missionary specialist of China. Kazan’s misinformation led him to conclude that if such a prominent scholar was sent to Japan, it surely must be on behalf on his government. He concluded that attacking an official envoy, in spite of the lack adequate means of costal defenses, would jeopardize Japan’s safety and harshly criticized his government for failing to recognize the precariousness of such enterprise. He also criticized the government’s defense policy and likened the state of bakufu with the decline of the Ming dynasty in China: “This resembles the refined style of living, with the leisurely drinking of wine, com- posing poetry, and dancing enjoyed by the leaders of the late Ming dynasty […] the samurai spirit is sinking more deeply into moral weakness, as though to finally bring about our country's ruin. In these days I would like to take important ministers of state to task, but they have always been the sons of wealthy aristocrats. I would also admonish those retainers in positions to influence lords active in affairs of state, but they are upstarts who have risen to power through bribery.” The work also contained words of praise for western learning and the advancement of knowledge in 88  Sugita Seikei (, 1817-1859),  that he had learned about the western concept of  “freedom” in his reading in Dutch and English but “when he heard that Takahashi, Watanabe, Takano, Takashima and others had been seized for spreading foreign ideas he feared that he too was inviting trouble. He held himself in check and was very careful not to let it slip from his mouth. The only way he could find solace for the heaviness of his spirit was through drink, but when he was drank he was unable to keep from shouting ‘freedom!’”.199 It was dangerous for non-bakufu officials to meddle in politics under Tokugawa rule, especially for commoners. Yet Kôkan went as far as contesting bakufu foreign policy. The absence of an official sanction is puzzling. In lieu of an answer, I would like to briefly look at the only case I know of direct involvement of the bakufu with Mt. Fuji’s supporters. As we have seen previously, despite repeated instruction from the bakufu, the west. Kazan was arrested and tried in 1839. Torii Yôzô, head of the metsuke office demanded that the death sentence be pronounced but Kazan was saved in extremis by the petitions written by his friends to influence the decision through an intervention of rôjû Mizuno Tadakuni. Two years after his exile, Watanabe Kazan committed suicide to avoid embarrassing his lord. Bonnie Akibo. “Watanabe Kazan and the Tokugawa Bakufu”. Monumenta Nipponica 44 (1989). 199  Marius B. Jansen. “Rangaku and Westernization”. Monumenta Nipponica 18 (1984),  p. 546. 89  Fujikô activities continued to increase over time. This long history of tension between political authorities and believers of the cult reached a peak in 1847 when the palanquin of the shogun general inspector (ômetsuke, )  was stopped in front of Edo castle  and he was handed a letter of complaint signed by Shôshichi, son of Kiemon from Saitama.200 The letter lamented the poor state of contemporary society in which people were pursuing pleasure without restraint and asserted the need for bakufu officials and the emperor to quickly understand that the world was changing. The letter also contained an explanation of the importance of Miroku’s teachings, as well as criticism directed towards both the shogun and the emperor for not realizing the state of crisis of the world, and failing to prepare for the advent of the “Age of Miroku.” Shôshichi indeed sought to have the top leaders of Japan comply with the Fujikô’s doctrine in order to meet the conditions needed to complete this much-awaited cosmic turnaround. The letter was passed on to Masao Naritsune, Finance Magistrate (1845-48), who rejected the complaint, summoned the protagonists, and started a long procedure of examination that lasted from the eighth month of the same year to the ninth month of 1849. Because of its scope and its religious ramifications, the examination was later 200  The following is based on the account given by Fumiko Miyazaki in Miyazaki  Fumiko . 7 (1986)  “Minshû no shûkyô undô” .  Koza nihon kinseishi  . Miyazaki based her research on primary documents contained  in the series Hatogayashi no komonjo () particularly, vol 2, 3  and 4,  published by the hatogayashiky_ikuiinkai (). 90  handed over to the Temple Magistrate Honda Tadamoto. The review of the case by the Finance Magistrate can be divided into two points. First, he reasserted that commoners should not occupy themselves with matters outside their family business, nor do they have the qualifications to do so. Second, he warned that commoners should not take part in religious activities that are not recognized by the bakufu or create new religious groups. From the point of view of the Finance Magistrate’s official, the petition was an absolute aberration, particularly the mention that the founder of the movement, Miroku, received a “revelation from heaven.” For him, the argument of a “revelation from heaven” meant that commoners could easily ignore bakufu authority in the name of an even greater power. The Fujikô cult therefore posed a political threat to the authority of the bakufu. The investigation led by the Temple Magistrate was particularly zealous. Not only did he summon the main protagonists of the case but also important members of various local chapters of the Fujikô and oshi (itinerant priests) from Sengen shrines. However, contrary to the rather strong critical stance taken by officials from the Finance Magistrate's office, the Temple Magistrate’s officials were more flexible. They seemed to have been more interested in the doctrine and practices of the cult, and apparently focused their inquiry on practical details such as the presence or absence of secret teachings. They also demanded that a copy of all the documents related to the cult’s teachings be provided to the investigators. According to Miyazaki, it is probable that the Temple Magistrate was not only concerned with the determination of an appropriate 91  punishment, they were probably looking for a pretext to obliterate the Fujikô and, in order to do so, they needed to fully understand the operation of the cult. In 1849, the case was finally settled and the Fujikô was once again banned. The bakufu reasserted its position that religious teachings outside the ones backed by the government should not be transmitted and that the creation of new religions was strictly prohibited. The members of Fujikô were severely criticized for these reasons but at the same time, bakufu officials could not find any concrete reason to completely terminate the cult. Members of the cult involved with the case were forced to turn in all the documents related to the cult in their possession and to sign an oath renouncing their faith. However, judging from the number of records and documents found in the homes of descendants of cult members it is highly probable that these injunctions were not followed. Members of this religious group were particularly active after the arrival of Perry in the midst of a social and political crisis further fuelled by recurring natural disasters.201 The cult even continued existing after the Meiji restoration, albeit with some serious doctrinal modifications to comply with the new trend of emperor worship. The outcome of the bakufu ’s official involvement with Fujikô is intriguing. It seems that the bakufu was not entirely sure how to deal with the case. Complex legal litigation requiring intervention from more than one Magistrate was more likely to create tensions or conflicts of authority within 201  Fumiko Miyazaki. .  “The Formation of Emperor Worship in the New  Religions—The Case of Fujidô—”. Japanese Journal of Religious Studies (1990), p. 289. 92  the bakufu bureaucracy, resulting in somewhat lighter sentences for the convicted, but the outcome in this case simply seems too clement and did not significantly alter the course of development of this new religion.  202  Did  bakufu bureaucrats estimate that, given the history and large number of adherents of the Fujikô, any strong action would have been bound to failure? Was the government too pressed to deal with greater issues at the time of the case to properly deal with Fujikô dissidents? In any event, this case shows one of the remarkably rare occurrences in which bakufu officials had to politically involve themselves with the mountain and its myriad supporters. The result is clear: by the mid 1800s the political authority of the bakufu could no longer compete with the power of Mt. Fuji. Could it have been that  202  Due to the complexity of the Tokugawa legal system, cases involving more than one  juridical authority, especially when religious rights were at sake, proved especially challenging. This tendency is exemplified by a divorce case in 1845 involving the Temple Magistrate, Town Magistrate and the authorities of Mantoku temple, in which both the Temple and Town magistrate claimed jurisdiction over the plaintiff. A long negotiation ensues in which both magistrate advance their respective arguments as to why they should be given authority to handle the case. See John Henry Wigmore, ed. Law and Justice in Tokugawa Japan. 20 vols. Tokyo: The University of Tokyo Press, 1967-1986. Vol. 8-A, pp. 13-34. 93  because Gennai and Kôkan were also involved with the mountain, it partially shielded them from governmental retaliation? In any event, the case bakufu vs. Fuji closed with an overwhelming victory for the mountain, a victory at the  height  of  its  popularity  in  the  Edo  period.  94  Figures IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a spread from the journal NIPPON containing pictures of Mt. Fuji. Gennifer Weisenfeld. “Touring Japan-as-Museum: NIPPON and Other Japanese Imperialist Travelogues.” Positions 8 (2000), p. 762.  Fig 1: “At the Foot of Mt. Fuji,” NIPPON, no. 6 (1936): 22–23. From Weisenfeld 2000, p. 762.  95  Fig 2: Maple leaves at New Palace, artist unknown, December 1888, Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. 2000.237a-c. Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.  96  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of a 500-yen bond showing Mt. Fuji. Melanie Trede. “Banknote Design as a Battlefield of Gender Politics and National Representation in Meiji Japan”. In Doris Croissant, Catherine Vance Yeh, Joshua S. Mostow eds. Performing “Nation” Gender politics in Literature, Theater, and the Visual Arts of China and Japan, 1880-1940. Leiden: Brill, 2008, p. 92.  Fig 3: 500-yen bonds, 1878. From Trede 2008, p. 92.  97  Fig 4: Nippon Yûsen Kaisha. S.S. “Awa Maru”. Late-Meiji period. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Leonard A. Lauder Collection of Japanese Postcards. Accession Number 2002.4947. Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Built in 1899 by Mitsubishi, the ship sailed the route between Japan and England till 1914 when it was assigned the route between Yokohama and Seattle.  98  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Fuji. Kano Hiroyuki . “”Akafuji” no fokuroa”. E ha kataru 14. Tokyo: Heibonsha, 1994, p. 38-39.  Fig 5: Nakabayashi Chikutô, Shinshû Kikanzu. From Kano 1994, pp. 58-59.  99  Fig 6: Katsushika Hokusai, Fugaku Sanjûrokkei, Gohyakurakanji. From Calza 2003, p. 276. Bibliothèque nationale de France.  100  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of one of the screens on which Taiga painted the 500 Arhats. Accessible online at < http://www.kyuhaku.jp/exhibition/exhibition_s23.html> (Last accessed May 2011).  Fig 7: Ike Taiga, 500 Arhats. Accessible online at < http://www.kyuhaku.jp/exhibition/exhibition_s23.html> (Last accessed May 2011).  101  IMAGES REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It contained the twelve images of the series Fuji in the 12 Months. By Ike Taiga. Melinda Takeuchi. Taiga’s True Views. The Language of Landscape Painting in EighteenthCentury Japan. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992, pp. 34-61.  Fig 8: Ike Taiga, Fuji in the 12 Months. From Takeuchi 1992, pp. 54-61.  102  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Asama by Ike Taiga. Melinda Takeuchi. Taiga’s True Views. The Language of Landscape Painting in Eighteenth-Century Japan. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992, 46-47.  Fig 9: Ike Taiga, True view of Mt. Asama. From Takeuchi 1992, pp. 46-47. IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of the Minô Waterfall by Ike Taiga. Melinda Takeuchi. Taiga’s True Views. The Language of Landscape Painting in Eighteenth-Century Japan. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992, p. 6.  Fig 10: Ike Taiga, Minô Waterfall. From Takeuchi 1992, p. 6.  103  Fig 11: Shiba Kôkan, Minô Waterfall. From Seiyû Ryotan, 1794. University of British Columbia, Rare Books and Special Collections, Japanese Maps, G155.J2 S5 1794.  Fig 12: Shiba Kôkan, Minô Waterfall. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 45. 104  Fig 13: Hiraga Gennai, Seiyô Fujinzu. From Johnson 2005, p. 35.  105  Fig 14: Odano Naotake, Takazu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, honbunron, p. 89.  106  Fig 15: Shiba Kôkan, Kôkan Hahazô. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 75.  Fig 16: Odano Naotake, Fujigakuzu. From Johnson 2005, p. 86.  Fig 17: Shiba Kôkan, Enoshima Fujibôenzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 293.  107  Fig 18: Odano Naotake, Enoshimazu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 293. IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of a western couple by Shiba Kôkan & Satake Shozan. Hiroko Johnson. Western Influences on Japanese Art. The Akita Ranga Art School and Foreign Books. Amsterdam: Hotei Publishing, 2005, p. 145.  Fig 19: Shiba Kôkan & Satake Shozan, Seiyô Danjozu. From Johnson 2005, p. 145. 108  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a landscape picture by Tani Buncho. Timon Screech. The Shogun’s Painted Culture. Fear and Creativity in the Japanese States, 1760-1829. London: Reaktion Books, 2000, p. 65.  Fig 20: Tani Bunchô, Kôyo Tanshôzu. From Screech 2000, p. 65.  Fig 21: Shiba Kôkan, Sôshû Kamakura Shichirigahamazu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 166.  109  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Fuji by Shiba Kôkan. Naruse Fujio . Shiba Kôkan shôgai to gagyô . 2 vols. Tokyo: Yasaka Shobô, 1995, Vol 2, p. 176.  Fig 22: Shiba Kôkan, Kisarazu Uranozu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 176.  Fig 23: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Satsuda Fujisanzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron. p. 242.  110  Fig 24: Shiba Kôkan, Teppôzu Fujienbôzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron. p. 255.  111  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Fuji by Shiba Kôkan. Naruse Fujio . Shiba Kôkan shôgai to gagyô . 2 vols. Tokyo: Yasaka Shobô, 1995, Vol 2, p. 266.  Fig 25: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Satsuda Fujisanenbôzu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 266.  112  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Fuji by Shiba Kôkan. Naruse Fujio . Shiba Kôkan shôgai to gagyô . 2 vols. Tokyo: Yasaka Shobô, 1995, Vol 2, p. 125.  Fig 26: Shiba Kôkan, Edojo Gairanjinzu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 125.  113  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Fuji by Katsushika Hokusai. . Accessible online at < http://www.degener.com/1606-64a.HTM> (Last accessed May 2011).  Fig 27: Katsushika Hokusai, Fugaku Hyakkei, Raichôno Fuji. Accessible online at < http://www.degener.com/1606-64a.HTM> (Last accessed May 2011).  114  IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of Mt. Fuji by Katsushika Hokusai. Keiko Suzuki. “The making of Tôjin. Construction of the Other in Early Modern Japan.” Asian Folklore Studies 66 (2007), p. 95.  Fig 28: Katsushika Hokusai, Tôkaidô Gojûsantsugino uchi hara. From Suzuki 2007, p. 95. IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a picture of a Korean envoy. Ronald P. Toby. “Carnival of the Aliens.” Monumenta Nipponica 41 (1986), p. 427.  Fig 29: Okamura Masanobu, Chôsenjin Raichônozu. From Toby 1986, p. 427.  115  Fig 30: Shiba Kôkan, Kanayadai Fugaku Enbôzu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 305.  Fig 31: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Iwafuchi Fujizu. Private Collection. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 310.  116  Fig 32: Shiba Kôkan, Sunshû Kashiwara Fujizu. From Naruse 1995, sakuhinron, p. 309.  117  Fig 33: Matsumoto Gengendô, Dôsen Nihon Yochi Zaizu. University of California at Berkeley. East Asian Library, Japanese Historical Maps Collection. Image No: jhm000033a. Courtesy of the C. V. Starr East Asian Library University of California, Berkeley.  118  Fig 34: Katsushika Hokusai, View of Famous Places on the Tokaidô at a Glance. From Calza 2003, p. 222. Bibliothèque nationale de France.  119  Fig 35: Hyôshiya Ichirôbei, Eiri Edo Ôezu. From Yamashita 1998, p. 103.  120  Fig 36: Ishikawaya Wasuke & Akitaya Ryôsuke (publisher), Shûgyoku Ryômen Dôchû Ki. From Yamashita 1998, p. 178.  121  Fig 37: Great Tôkai Earthquake. From Yamashita 1998, p. 232. IMAGE REMOVED DUE TO COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS. It was a map of Mt. Fuji. Yoichi Yokota. “A Painter who had a Bird's Eye View: Gountei Sadahide.” IMCoS Journal 76(1999), p. 20.  Fig 38: Fuji Môde Hitori Annai. From Yokota 1999, p. 20.  122  Fig 39: Naraya Kurohaku (publisher), Map of the Seven Hot Springs of Hakone. From 123  Yamashita 1998, p. 262.  Fig 40: Map of Suruga Province. From Yamashita 1998, p. 75.  124  Fig 41: Katsushika Hokusai, The Great Wave at Kanagawa. From Calza 2003, p. 418. Bibliothèque nationale de France.  125  Bibliography Akibo 1989 Bonnie Akibo. “Watanabe Kazan and the Tokugawa Bakufu”. Monumenta Nipponica 44 (1989), pp. 199-219. Asakura 1994 Asakura Haruhiko  ed. Shiba Kôkan no kenkyû.  Tokyo:  Yasaka Shobô, 1994. 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