Giving Up the Gun: Japan's Reversion to the Sword, 1543-1879
Was there ever a time when a civilization, technically sophisticated, and in full possession of its senses, reverted in an earlier, less advanced technology? You bet - Japan, 1543-1879. During this period Japan effectively prohibited all manufacture of firearms and gunpowder, and isolated itself from the rest of the world with a blockade that remained successful until Commodore Perry's celebrated "opening of Japan" in 1854. An altogether fascinating book - because Perrin is a consistently good storyteller, because even his footnotes are a delight to read, and because this is the story that really has few parallels in modern history.
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Review: Giving Up the Gun: Japan's Reversion to the Sword, 1545-1879User Review - Sasha - Goodreads
I read this more for study purposes rather than for enjoyment, but it was a really nice introduction. Perrin manages to write concisely as to not bore the reader and makes interesting comparisons West ... Read full review
Review: Giving Up the Gun: Japan's Reversion to the Sword, 1545-1879User Review - Mark - Goodreads
This was an interesting look at how Japan gave up an entire form of technology in the 17th century. While Perrin is no expert on Japan, and his overall observations about technology are a little dated, he is a superb writer who makes his arguments effectively and with passion. Read full review