Japanese Socialism Learned in America
[Socialist Theory] Shakaishugi ron
Notes: A rare early work explaining the ideas of socialism by one of the founding members of the Japanese Socialist Party. The fourteen short chapters were originally published in the Niroku Shinpo newspaper. This book version was published by another early Japanese Socialist leader, Katayama Sen.
Katayama and Abe both discovered socialism while living in the United States in the late 19th century and they both became leading proponents of Japanese immigration to America. Both saw opportunities in America for poor Japanese to obtain an education and to find work at good wages (compared to the oppressive peasant economy in Japan) and between them published at least six books on immigration to the US.
While this book does not address immigration, as an early exposition of Abe's socialist ideas ("socialism...simply prohibits competition for food and clothing, the so-called survival of the fittest"), it is a concise exposition of the ideas that would encourage thousands of Japanese to immigrate to the US. Unlike Katayama, who focused on labor unions, Abe, as a Christian Socialist who attended the Hartford Theological Seminary, was mainly interested in social welfare. In that regard, he bridged the gap between Japanese Socialists and the Christian Nihon Rikkokai, which also encouraged Japanese to go abroad to the US.
For more information on Abe, Katayama, and the connection between Japanese socialism and American immigration, see Sidney Xu Lu, The Making of Japanese Settler Colonialism, pp. 113–119.
2, 48 pages
OCLC: 23437589 (University of Washington only; preservation photocopy).
Edition + Condition: First edition (first printing).Stapled rusted, else very good in the original wrappers.
Publication: Tokyo: Katayama Sen, 1903 (Meiji 36).
Item No: #361850