Abstract: This essay explores the persuasive power of Takeo Doi’s idea of amae. Doi’s description of Japanese cultural psychology as rooted in sensitivity, innocence, and passivity allowed him to provide a comfortable return to the values of familiality, paternalism, and beneficent authority, in a way that could be embraceable in the context of postwar democracy. The essay situates Doi’s ideas in the context of postwar liberalism and explores his engagement with Christian writers, whose ideals of humility and deference allowed Doi to link Japanese particularism with Western humanism. It also explores his analysis of Natsume Sōseki’s novels.
The Journal of Japanese Studies – Society for Japanese Studies
Published: Jul 14, 2012