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Environmental Politics in Japan

Environmental Politics in Japan
Networks of Power and Protest

$50.99 (C)

  • Date Published: July 1999
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521665742

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  • Japan experienced rapid industrial growth after World War II, but its economic miracle brought dramatic environmental deterioration. In the early 1970s, as local protest movements grew more vocal, the Japanese government moved relatively swiftly to regulate industrial pollution and succeeded in reducing its air and water pollution, but not many other environmental problems. This book analyzes the social, cultural, and political-economic causes of Japan's dramatic environmental damage and eventual partial restoration from 1955 to 1995. A case of regional heavy industrial growth and environmental protest in rural Japan provides the local details of how pro-growth and pro-environment coalitions mobilized, struggled, and affected policy outcomes in Japan. The author uses the case-study finding to comment on sociological and political science theories about the effects of culture and social structure on state policy-making, social control, protest movement mobilization and success, and environmental problem-solving.

    • Japan has had dramatic economic success, and equally dramatic environmental problems; no good account yet available of how Japan came to grips with them so successfully
    • Uses Japanese case to test Western social theories - do they hold true in a different cultural setting?
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Jeff Broadbent describes one of the most poignant conflicts in Japan, the battle between environmental preservation and economic development, in the case of Oita Prefecture. Fluent in Japanese, extremely well informed about Japanese politics and history, committed to environmental protection, Broadbent presents a nuanced and thoroughly researched account of a highly dramatic political struggle." Ezra F. Vogel, Harvard University

    "A richly provocative exploration of just how local citizen-worker groups confront environmental problems, despite the tug of 'economic progress'. The intensive and extensive field work Broadbent has done on these local groups is further enriched by his attempts to place these challenges in a macrostructural content of political and economic change. His insights are equally powerful in detailing the roots of the responses by political and economic elites in Japan to these local personalities and movements." Allan Schnaiberg, Northwestern University

    "Broadbent's book is indispensable for all students of Japan but also invaluable for anyone interested in social movements. I know of no other study which so effectively combines careful ethnography of a local movement with a full consideration of the national context and response. This is a model study in the field of social movements and an exciting book to read." Robert N. Bellah, Prof. Emeritus, University of California, Berkeley

    "To produce Environmental Politics in Japan Jeff Broadbent invested fifteen years of loving labor on two continents, utilized multiple research methodologies ranging from fieldwork in the Japanese hinterlands to computer-driven network analysis, added a masterful reworking of apparently contradictory perspectives in social movements, environmental studies, and political theory, and contributed a stunning array of own his luminous and original ideas. The result is an arresting analysis of how and when ordinary people can and cannot alter social and political trajectories." Michael Schwartz, State University of New York at Stony Brook

    "Through his superb Japanese language ability and detailed field work, Jeffrey Broadbent has achieved the highest level of Japanese studies, on a par with Western sociologists such as Ronald P. Dore and Ezra Vogel. This book offers a stimulating comparative and theoretical analysis of political power in ACID (advanced, capitalist, industrialized democratic) societies including Japan." Joji Watanuki, Sofia University

    "Bringing to bear an impressive array of social science theories, Jeffrey Broadbent gives us the most comprehensive work to date on how Japan, a densely populated country that was a 'polluter's paradise' until the 1960s, achieved one of the world's most dramatic environmental turnarounds. Political scientists, sociologists, and students of Japan will find a wealth of material here for puzzling over solutions to a central policy challenge in nations today at all levels of development: how to find the right mix between economic growth and environmental protection. The author shows how culture, protest, and elite politics intermeshed in Japan's quest for its own answer." Susan J. Pharr, Harvard University

    "This is a first-class book that sets aright the misperception that Japanese politics and social protest cannot be understood from a synthesized class and political process viewpoint. It shows how class theory and resource mobilization arguments can be synthesized and that protest is an important source of political change in comparative context." J. Craig Jenkins, The Ohio State University

    "By bringing his own intense involvement in Japanese culture to bear skillfully and reflectively on issues of great general importance, Jeffrey Broadbent has served everyone who wants to know about environmental politics, the shaping of popular struggles by state structure, and the character of Japanese local life. He writes with analytical passion." Charles Tilly, Columbia University

    "...Broadbent....masterfully illustrates the complexities of local politics in Japan and their influence on national politics; he diagrams the nature of grassroots movements and protest politics in Japan; and he expands his observations to fit into the larger, more globally focused theoretical debates about social movements in general." Jeremy Entwisle, PhD; Colloquy, The Graduate School of Arts & Sciences / Harvard University

    "...this is an impressively researched book that will surely remain a major work in the field of Japanese environmental studies for years to come." JAAS

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 1999
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521665742
    • length: 440 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 153 x 24 mm
    • weight: 0.64kg
    • contains: 13 b/w illus. 3 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of figures and tables
    Preface
    1. Growth versus the environment in Japan
    2. Visions and realities of growth
    3. Protest and policy change
    4. Movement startups
    5. Protest against landfill No. 8
    6. Under the machine
    7. The Governor gives in
    8. Contested consensus
    9. Pyrrhic victories
    10. Power, protest, and political change
    Appendix 1: Meso-networks and macro-structures
    Appendix 2: Oita Prefecture and Japan National Growth and environmental key events:
    1955–1980
    Appendix 3: Pollution legislation at prefectural and national levels:
    1964–1985
    References
    Index.

  • Author

    Jeffrey Broadbent, University of Minnesota

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