The Moral and Political Naturalism of Baron Katō Hiroyuki

The Moral and Political Naturalism of Baron Katō Hiroyuki

(JRM 13)

Winston Davis

Publication date: 1996
ISBN-13 (print): 978-1-55729-052-6
ISBN-10 (print): 1-55729-052-0

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In this philosophical study of the later writings of the leading Social Darwinist of Meiji Japan, Baron Katō Hiroyuki (1836–1916), Davis argues that Katō developed his own philosophical "system." The study's purpose is to recover a "missing link" in the development of Darwinist social thought as a global phenomenon. As such, Davis engages Katō as a thinker and determines what was really at stake in his theory of moral and political naturalism.

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Title information

In this philosophical study of the later writings of the leading Social Darwinist of Meiji Japan, Baron Katō Hiroyuki (1836–1916), Davis argues that Katō developed his own philosophical "system." The study's purpose is to recover a "missing link" in the development of Darwinist social thought as a global phenomenon. As such, Davis engages Katō as a thinker and determines what was really at stake in his theory of moral and political naturalism.

Pages: 125
Language: English
Publisher: Institute of East Asian Studies, University of California, Berkeley
OCLC: 34515050

Winston Davis

Winston Davis was Wilson-Craven Professor of Religion at Southwestern University.

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The Moral and Political Naturalism of Baron Katō Hiroyuki (JRM 13)

Abbreviations – vi
Preface – vii

1. The Ontology of Politics and Morality – 1
2. The Career of a Government Scholar – 10
3. Kato Hiroyuki and Ueki Emori on Natural Rights – 20
4. Kato's Theory of Evolution – 35
5. Evolution and Politics – 60
6. Kato's Theory of Religion and Ethics – 83
7. Evolution and the Doctrine of Progress – 103
8. Critique – 107

JOURNAL REVIEWS

"The book under review takes up Katō's naturalism in relation to politics and
ethics. Winston Davis brings expertise in the history and sociology of religion to bear on Katō, analyzing his post-1882 writings on human rights. [Davis] turns a laser-like eye on Kato's one-track mind." ~George M. Wilson, Indiana University, in The Journal of Asian Studies (http://www.jstor.org/stable/2658331)

"[Davis' book] is well researched and deftly written, and makes a valuable contribution to the history of modern Japanese thought....Not only is Davis's study helpful in providing a view of the historical milieu in Japan just after the Meiji Restoration, but it also illustrates, if Kato may be taken as representative, just how difficulitt is to take in the subtleties of philosophical, scientific, political, and social thought of another culture within a single generation." ~Robert E. Carter, Trent University, in Monumenta Nipponica (http://www.jstor.org/stable/2385579)