Sep 11 – 16, 2022
University of Warsaw
Europe/Warsaw timezone

Session

S76. MEDIEVAL AND MODERN TIMES 1. THE COINAGE AND PAPER CURRENCY OF MEDIEVAL AND EARLY-MODERN JAPAN

S76
Sep 16, 2022, 11:00 AM
Auditorium Maximum - Hall D

Auditorium Maximum - Hall D

Conveners

S76. MEDIEVAL AND MODERN TIMES 1. THE COINAGE AND PAPER CURRENCY OF MEDIEVAL AND EARLY-MODERN JAPAN

  • Hisashi Takagi (Osaka University Of Economics)

Description

Org. and chair: Hisashi Takagi

This session reviews recent numismatic studies in Japan. It particularly focuses on bronze coins circulating in the 16th century, paper currency issued in the early-modern period, and a collection in a museum in Europe which includes gold and silver coins from Japan.
Conventional numismatic discourse on medieval and early-modern Japan has tended to focus on the identification of numismatic resources themselves. However, for the purpose of further discussion and subsequent development, this session will instead adopt perspectives generated by scholars working in social-economic historical studies. The background to this session thus lies in the development of analytical methods for the study of the monetary system in medieval Japan based on the integrated disciplines of numismatic archaeology and historiography, and in numismatic research focused on paper currency and credit money theory.
The presentations in this session will therefore showcase the following ground-breaking case studies: rethinking the definition of Bita, a subcategory of bronze coinage in 16th-century Japan; a numismatic study of paper currency issued by feudal domains in the Tokugawa period; a numismatic study of private paper currency in the Tokugawa period; and a study of Japanese coins preserved in a museum in Europe.
The common element in the first three presentations is the innovative focus on the common people as a determinant of the circulation of various types of currency. In addition, this session seeks to relativize conventional money commodity theory, or ‘metallism’, by showing the historical experiences of pre-modern Japan. Moreover, the last presentation will illustrate the history of the collection of Japanese coins in 19th-century Europe by discussing a collection in the National Museum of Denmark.

Presentation materials

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