The intellectual and social theorist Yukichi Fukuzawa wrote An Encouragement of Learning (1872--1876) as a series of pamphlets as he completed his critical masterpiece, An Outline of a Theory of Civilization (1875). Closely linked, the two texts illustrate the core tenets of Fukuzawa's theoretical outlook: freedom and equality as inherent to human nature, independence as the goal of any individual and nation, and the transformation of the Japanese mind as key to moving forward in a rapidly evolving political and cultural landscape. Fukuzawa called for the adoption of Western modes of education to help Japan emerge as a modern nation. He believed human beings' treatment of one another extended to a government's behavior, echoing the work of John Locke, Thomas Jefferson, and other Western thinkers in a classically structured Eastern text.
- Publication Date:
- 17 / 12 / 2013