Japan – Land of the Rising Sun. There is a great paradox to Japan with regard to its place in the modern family of nations. In physical size, Japan is not a large nation. Its total land area is only 145,882 square miles, essentially the size of Montana, or another way to measure it is to say that it is slightly smaller than California. With regard to its population, Japan is a major nation with over 130,000,000 people, making it one of the ten most populated nations on earth. But it is when one looks at Japan’s economic strength that the nation truly shines. Japan is economically among the big three, third after the United States and China. The country’s gross domestic product and standard of living make it a giant among nations.
How can a country that is physically so small, and clearly overcrowded be such a major world nation with regard to its economic impact? To answer that question, it is necessary to read this entire travel companion, as the answer is not a simple one. To understand the dynamics of Japan’s economic success means one must first understand the dynamics of the culture itself. The way of life and the value system that is Japan is in good measure the reason for the nation’s economic success.
The people of Japan are highly creative and innovative. In addition, their culture is resilient in that it is able to borrow ideas from outside and incorporate them into its way of doing things without loosing its identity. Japan went from being a feudal nation steeped in ancient traditions to becoming a world power in less than 50 years. Of course its rise to world power in the early 20th century ultimately led Japan into a major world war that ended with the country’s defeat. At the end of the war, Japan laid in ruins, yet by the 1960’s, its rise as an economic power astounded the rest of the world.
In this book, the entire matrix of Japanese culture will be explored so as to give you a firm understanding of the dynamics of the nation, and help you enjoy your visit if you are planning to travel. Japan is a country whose lifestyle is very foreign to foreigners, but still one in which we can quickly feel quite at home. There are many outward similarities that can be seen in the day-to-day urban patterns. This gives us comfort, but it belies the very different nature of the culture, something that must be understood to truly enjoy a trip to Japan,
Japan is a one of a kind nation. It is a land of great contrasts both environmentally and culturally. It is also a land in which there is still a degree of mystery. So now it is time to explore The Land of the Rising Sun.
If you like this introduction, my entire book plus many other traveler’s companion books are all available here.
I would also invite you to join me in 2015 and 2016 during the summer months, as I will be cruising the Baltic Sea with Silversea Cruises.
For more information about joining Dr. Lew Deitch on one of these cruises, contact us.
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