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ERIC Number: ED515868
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 258
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1096-2340-6
The Development of Japanese Identity among Middle School Students in Japan: From the Perspectives of the State and Students
Kawano, Marika Suziki
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles
This dissertation explores the issues related to the development of national identity amongst middle school students in Japan, from both macro and micro perspectives of the state's educational policy and the students' conception. While it is impossible to understand a national education without placing it in the larger context, the concept of "national" remains as relevant as ever, despite the fact that we live in this age of global interconnectedness. The development of a child's national identity has been raised as one of the top priorities in recent educational reforms in Japan. I conducted my document analysis on the historic revision of the Fundamental Law of Education of 2006, the proposed revision of the national curriculum of 2008, and the moral education workbook published by the state in 2002, which showed that the state continues to cling to the development of Japanese identity based on the myth of homogeneity around such concepts as "tradition" and "culture." It demonstrated a troubling trend that is slowly bringing the country back to its pre-war ways of nationalism. To find out how the micro actors of middle school students in Japan conceptualize "Japan" and "Japanese people," I conducted a case study using questionnaires and focus groups in two private schools in Kanagawa prefecture. The results not only showed that the students more or less hold a similar kind of national sentiment that is being promoted by the state, but they also showed a tendency to be more open and flexible towards the boundary making of "Japan" and "Japanese." I argue the need for the development of a more inclusive national self-understanding through education, reflecting the reality of cultural and ethnic diversity and heterogeneity that exist in Japan in order to construct a more democratic society. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan