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Neo-Confucianism and industrial relations in Meiji Japan

Neo-Confucianism and industrial relations in Meiji Japan Purpose – This paper sets out to explain the poor nature of industrial relations in Meiji Japan (1868-1911), especially the puzzling lack of Neo-Confucianist values. Design/methodology/approach – This paper combines two approaches. First, it draws on and scrutinizes the major literature. Second, it uses a case approach. Findings – First, we find that a widely accepted assumption used in many management (and other) studies on Japan, namely, that Neo-Confucianism was institutionalized in Tokugawa Japan (1603-1867), is distorted. Second, we find that the poor nature of labor relations in Meiji Japan can be explained by and is the product of a multitude of factors, both indigenous and imported from abroad. Originality/value – First, this paper provides a novel explanation for the poor nature of labor relations in Meiji Japan. Second, this paper corrects a widely held assumption on Japan that is frequently used in management studies. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Management History Emerald Publishing

Neo-Confucianism and industrial relations in Meiji Japan

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
1751-1348
DOI
10.1108/JMH-07-2013-0031
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – This paper sets out to explain the poor nature of industrial relations in Meiji Japan (1868-1911), especially the puzzling lack of Neo-Confucianist values. Design/methodology/approach – This paper combines two approaches. First, it draws on and scrutinizes the major literature. Second, it uses a case approach. Findings – First, we find that a widely accepted assumption used in many management (and other) studies on Japan, namely, that Neo-Confucianism was institutionalized in Tokugawa Japan (1603-1867), is distorted. Second, we find that the poor nature of labor relations in Meiji Japan can be explained by and is the product of a multitude of factors, both indigenous and imported from abroad. Originality/value – First, this paper provides a novel explanation for the poor nature of labor relations in Meiji Japan. Second, this paper corrects a widely held assumption on Japan that is frequently used in management studies.

Journal

Journal of Management HistoryEmerald Publishing

Published: Sep 2, 2014

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