ERIC Number: ED237343
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
Japan's High Schools.
Rohlen, Thomas P.
The author, an anthropologist, spent 14 months (1974-75) in the industrial port city of Kobe (Japan) observing a cross section of urban high schools, including Japan's most elite private school and a night vocational school plagued by absenteeism and delinquency. He reports on the character of the institutions and of the experience via descriptions of school organization, classroom instruction, teacher/union politics, textbooks, adolescent peer relations, and extracurricular activities. Placing this ethnographic detail into a larger societal context, several factors that shape Japanese high schools are examined: the fiercely competitive university entrance system; the history of secondary education as it has been changed by modernization, nationalism, and the American occupation; and differences in student social background. In turn, the impact of high school education on contemporary Japan is assessed from the perspectives of social equality, Japanese culture, and national efficiency. The inherent contradictions among these considerations are explored, concluding that education's role in providing Japan with a well-trained, highly disciplined work force is accomplished by significant human/cultural costs. Narrowness of the learning process and improvement of instructional spirit are contrasted with very real accomplishments in teaching the basics and in socializing students to high levels of productive behavior. (JN)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, College Entrance Examinations, Cultural Context, Delinquency, Educational History, Educational Policy, Educational Practices, Extracurricular Activities, Foreign Countries, High Schools, Higher Education, Politics, School Organization, Sex Differences, Student Characteristics, Teacher Characteristics, Teaching Methods, Textbooks
University of California Press, 2120 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, CA 94720.
Publication Type: Books; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A