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Resor i 1800-talets Japan: En analys av två svenska reseskildringar i Japan under Meijieran
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Cultural Sciences.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Traveling in the 19th Century Japan : An analysis of two Swedish travelogues (English)
Abstract [en]

This thesis deals with the characterization of Japan and Japanese people by Swedish travelers during the Meiji period. It seeks to answer what aspects of Japanese people two Swedish travelers chose to highlight, and how these aspects were presented in their travelogues. This thesis also has a second aim. By applying Edward Said’s theory of orientalism, it wants to answer if Swedish travelogues were influenced by western 19th century ideas of colonialism and imperialism. Finally, the third question deals with the question if these travelogues fit the general European discourse regarding Japan. The results show that the two Swedish travelers present many different parts of the Japanese; topics such as nature, industry and the character its inhabitants were all accounted for. Most of these different aspects were presented in a positive light, and this seems to hold true for the general perception of the country. It also shows that the travelogues fits in with the general Swedish perception of Japan; that it is a country inhabited by intelligent people that are considered to be highly civilized. However, it is still implied that the Japanese are not considered to be true equals, despite the travelers' claim that they are excelling in many areas compared to Europeans. The Japanese discourse is therefore one of admiration and also of a subtle feeling of superiority, though the latter is not as overt in its presentation as it was with orientalism.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 39 p.
Keyword [en]
Japan, Sweden, Travelogue, Meiji, Characterization, Orientalism
Keyword [sv]
Japan, Sverige, Reseskildringar, Meiji, Karakterisering, Orientalism
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-40587OAI: diva2:792704
Subject / course
Educational program
Teacher Education Programme for Upper Secondary School, 300/330 credits
Available from: 2015-03-12 Created: 2015-03-04 Last updated: 2015-03-12Bibliographically approved

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Moen, Björn
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