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TV PROGRAMS > NHK Special

Oedo – Part 2: Craftsmen and merchants drove Edo’s economic growth

  • June 10, 2018
  • , NHK
  • JMH Summary

Sunday’s NHK Special” aired the second part of its series on Tokyo when it was known as Edo, saying that residents enjoyed a luxurious lifestyle and the economic growth rate of Edo in the mid-Edo period was the second highest in the world despite Japan’s policy of seclusion. The program said samurai supported the economy of Edo during the first part of the period, adding that after they lost their power, the economy was supported by craftsmen and merchants. Even after a major famine, merchants formed a safety-net system and kept rice in warehouses to support the poor. An expert said that although it had been believed that Japan’s modernization was a result of the influence of foreign nations after the Meiji restoration, the city was already being modernized by Edo’s merchants and craftsmen.

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