Towards a Transcultural History of Diplomacy
- Matsukata Fuyuko (Universiteit van Tokio)
- 14 september 2017
- Lipsius Building
2311 BD Leiden
International relations in pre-modern Asia is often explained in terms of a “tributary system.” In this talk I challenge this idea that all diplomatic relations in Asia were vertical. Using examples from the foreign relations of Japan’s early modern state, the Tokugawa Shogunate, I suggest that pre-modern foreign relations in Asia were actually much more diverse. I propose the concept “letter diplomacy” instead in order to describe a more flexible picture of interstate relations in pre-modern Asia.
About the speaker
Fuyuko Matsukata, Professor in the Historiographical Institute at the University of Tokyo, is one of the world’s foremost experts on Dutch-Japanese relations. She is the author of four major books and dozens of articles, including articles in English published in Itinerario and Monumenta Nipponica.