Geistesgeschichtliche Beziehungen Japan - Deutschland : Eine Auswertung der Zeitschrift Taiyō
Taiyō (The Sun) – the monthly Review of Politics, Economics, Sciences, Literature, and Art, published from 1895 to 1928 with a circulation of 100,000 – plays an important role as a mirror which reflects contemporary currents of thought and culture. This paper introduces a representative sampling of articles from this review related to German matters, and analyzes the writings of three well-known intellectuals which appeared in this review. Three debates command particular attention: the “Dispute About Aesthetics” (1896) between Takayama Chogyū and Mori Ōgai, the correspondence between Chogyū and Anezaki Chōfū,(1901-1902) and its literary significance, and the contrary opinions of Ōgai and Chōfū concerning studying abroad and the Yellow Peril. Central to this analysis are patterns of transmission and reception of German thought in late Meiji Japan, a transitional stage in Japanese history when the spiritual basis of modern Japan was rapidly being solidified. The conclusion confirms the cultural and literary significance of the review Taiyō as a conduit for matters German into the wider currents of Japanese thought and culture of the period.