Yoshikawa Kobunkan is pleased to announce the publication of Michinoku History Course: The Tohoku Region during the Edo Period as Depicted in Contemporary Documents (Kenichiro Aratake, Teiji Nomoto, Hiroyuki Fujikata, eds.).
This book contains detailed discussions of the people who lived at the time and is focused on the themes of samurai (warriors) and villages. It is based on contemporary Edo-period documents from the Tohoku region. The three editors are among the authors, including Norikazu Sato, Masaya Kanamori, Morikatsu Takahashi, Yoshitaka Takahashi, and Takashi Watanabe. The articles are focused primarily on the activities of samurai and farmers. They explore the relationship between Date Masamune and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, the daily lives of samurai, and the history of the management of forest resources and natural hot springs, and they provide analyses of the characteristics of these specific topics.
We avoided describing the commonly-held “image” of these people and events. Instead, we maintained awareness that we were depicting the realities of the samurai who lost their positions, the ordinary people who were skilled at business and commerce, and the relationships between farmers and landowners that we identified through our careful reading of the contemporary documents. We also elucidated issues such as human-centered urban planning, knowledge of fire prevention, the use of resources, and many other topics.
We hope that this book will be enjoyable and informative to readers.