chapter  9
18 Pages

The Americanization of technologies and management in Japan and its multiple effects

The case of Toray
ByTsuneo Suzuki

The US, which dominated Japan through its occupation forces from 1945, wielded an enormous influence on Japanese attitudes towards American culture.1 On the one hand, specialists, such as business leaders and engineers, welcomed the latest ideas and trends and access to new developments. On the other, ordinary people were impressed by American popular culture such as music, fashion and food – even simple things like Coca Cola and chewing gum. At the time, automobiles and automated technologies truly epitomized the idea of American products and American production systems. There were, however, many Japanese people who had antagonistic feelings towards the American military occupation. Regarding the Americanization of Japan during the occupation, I should refer to the feelings of the workers against American officers and those of top management who intended to exploit the new American way to increase production. These different and multi-storied effects permeated Japanese society through newspapers, magazines, radio and periodicals. Food and fashion, for common people, and the way of operating in the business world, were deeply affected.