chapter  4
25 Pages

Attacking non-Christian ‘Christians’: Ideological uses of early Tokugawa anti-Christian discourse

The previous chapter examined three different kinds of anti-Christian discourse of the early Tokugawa period: government-authored proclamations associated with the actual repression of Christianity inside Japan; popular literature for domestic consumption inside Japan, written after the repression was complete; and a hitherto overlooked array of diplomatic documentation intended for an overseas rather than a domestic readership. The diplomatic documentation and one other early anti-Christian work authored by Hayashi Razan, Haiyaso, revealed a different kind of anti-Christian writing to the simple xenophobic representations of the Other that are commonly held up as examples of anti-Christian discourse. The diplomatic documentation revealed more nuanced creations of dichotomies between Confucianism and Christianity, which Razan and others tied to a number of different international relations frameworks of the early seventeenth century.