The development of sport in Japan
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The development of sport in Japan book
The object of this chapter is to use Elias’s theory of the civilizing process to examine the development of martial arts and western sports in Japan. Explanations of the development of Japanese sports have usually emphasized the differences between the development of western sports and Japanese sports, and have also often emphasized the mysticism, collectivism and formalism which some writers have held to be characteristic of traditional Japanese culture. Many explanations have also drawn on Ruth Benedict’s characterization of Japanese culture as a regulated ‘shame culture’, compared with western ‘guilt culture’, while the Bushido spirit has been held to provide the essential background or cultural character of Japanese sports.