Saturday, May 7, 2011

Again, Whence the Japanese?

The question posed in a recent post — Whence the Japanese? — is addressed by a study suggesting that "Japan's many dialects originate in a migration of farmers from the Korean Peninsula some 2,200 years ago" — "Japanese Originates from Korean Language".

"The findings suggest that Japan's many language variants -- and by extension much of its culture -- did not emerge, as widely believed by many Japanese, primarily from indigenous hunter-gatherers already present on the archipelago for millennia."

The findings are not only interesting to students of linguistics, but those of agriculture and civilization as well:
    The researchers chose words unlikely to be borrowed across dialects and "resistant to change," much in the same way biologists seek out so-called "highly-conserved" genes that remain unaltered for thousands of generations.

    Computer modelling showed that all of these "Japonic" languages descended from a common ancestor some 2,182 years ago -- coinciding with the major wave of migration from the Korean Peninsula.

    The exact timing of the farmers' arrival may go back a little further, Lee said by email, but the core conclusion seems inescapable: "the first farmers of Japan had a profound impact on the origins of both people and languages."

    The study, published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, also highlights a remarkable, and possibly unique, delay in the transition to agricultural culture.

    At the same time that China was undergoing one of the most remarkable explosions of culture and philosophy in human history during its Spring and Autumn Period, Japan was just emerging -- perhaps by choice -- from the stone age.

    "What puzzles me is that the hunter-gather population who live in Japan seemed to have chosen a 'harmonious' lifestyle over an 'exploitative' agricultural lifestyle," he said.

    "They had knowledge of cultivation but never developed it into full-scale farming."
About that last puzzling bit, Jared Diamond said in a recent article — "Koreans, Japanese Are Like Twin Brothers" — that "we have to remember that until 400 b.c., the Korea Strait separated not rich farmers from poor hunter-gatherers, but poor farmers from rich hunter-gatherers." He continues:
    China itself and Jomon Japan were probably not in direct contact. Instead Japan’s trade contacts, such as they were, involved Korea. But rice had been domesticated in warm southern China and spread only slowly northward to much cooler Korea, because it took a long time to develop cold-resistant strains of rice. Early rice agriculture in Korea used dry-field methods rather than irrigated paddies and was not particularly productive. Hence early Korean agriculture could not compete with Jomon hunting and gathering. Jomon people themselves would have seen no advantage in adopting Korean agriculture, insofar as they were aware of its existence, and poor Korean farmers had no advantages that would let them force their way into Japan.
He goes on to explain how "the advantages finally reversed suddenly and dramatically."

Labels: , , , ,

Bookmark and Share


Blogger hoihoi51 said...

I commented here
chech out

10:20 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

not twin btothers..
that is, it can say" same mother and different father"

11:13 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

if you consider the situation of what peninsula was.
peninsula was the place where losers( by wars) came to corner from continent.
Of course, the situation is different from Italian peninsula.

there was mimana-Japan government In Kaya
it is also written in Chinese document
it was just like US base in Japan

according to Gwanggaeto stele, wa(japanese) ppl run away to Mimana(kaya)...
there are many Japanese type of grave.
so are Magatama in korea that Jade doesn't exist in the peninsula.

by hideyoshi invasion, there are many Japanese castle in korea.
in Manchuria , there are many building that japan built..

after battle of Battle of Baekgang、most Japanese withdrew from peninsula. it was just like after ww2

many refugees came to Japan. They are former basically Japanese. 

Talhae of Silla was the fourth king of Silla, one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea. He is commonly called Talhae Isageum or Seok Talhae, isageum being the royal title in early Silla.
He was a member of the Gyeongju Seok clan, one of the noble clans that shared the Silla throne during the early Common Era.
He was born in a small kingdom 1000 li1 northeast of Wa (Japan)

Hogong, he was also a Japanese..
Hogong was a minister of Silla in the age of nation-building. It is recorded that he was originally from the Wa people of Japan

A basic mistake is that the Japanese has come over from a Korean peninsula or the continent. There were a lot of advancements of the Japanese rather than them.

12:02 AM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

My reading of all this is concurrent with my reading of Egypt and the Origin of Civilization: The British School of Culture Diffusion, 1890s-1940s (Volume 1). The British school of diffusionism "concluded that all aspects of civilizations, from technology to religion, originated in Egypt and diffused to other cultural areas." I'll be writing a review soon.

While mainstream history of civilization is all about war and conquest, diffusionism, as I understand it at least, is more about peace and commerce. (Thomas Jefferson, anyone?)

None of this was posted to denigrate the great nation of Japan, which has far more to be proud of than just about any country I can think of. As you note, the cultural exchanges went both ways, and the diffusionists would have much to say about the Jomon Japanese retaining the hunter-gatherer economy, and, as Prof. Diamond notes, quite successfully. Your comments about Japanese-Hebrew connections bring to mind diffusionism.

Diffusionism does counter, however, narrow nationalism and racialism. Forgive me if I also find some connections to the thought of our great American Catholic convert Orestes Augustus Brownson, who wrote:

"There is no civilized nation now existing that developed from a common ancestor this side of Adam, and the most mixed are the most civilized. The nearer a nation approaches to a primitive people of pure unmixed blood, the farther removed it is from civilization. All civilizations are political nations, and are founded in the fact, not on rights antecedent to the fact."

12:52 AM  
Blogger The Sanity Inspector said...

I've often thought that Japan and Korea were roughly analogous to England and Ireland: one colonized the other; they share many important similarities; and in most important respects an outsider would think they are the same--but God help the outsider if he says so within their hearing.

10:04 AM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

it is not narrow nationalism and racialism. Japan never said Japanese culture never come from China.
we all respect ancient china though..
Japan never throw away chinese characters.
who throw away?
korean can not read ancient document anymore because of narrow nationalism..

12:46 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

Of course, the interchange of cultures is not one-way traffic.
however there are so many historical doccuments about korea in china and Japan. many japanese watched korea from ancient
even first chosen king was nota korean according to yuan doccument.

funny thing is..
Even if Japan is nationalism, a miserable history is not concealed.
because it is true..
korean history is just a story that they wants

for example Kumudo ,aka kendo
you know korean Confucism、right
the did not like to move even chopstick,

how about Taekwondo?
most japanese and chinese know its history of lie..

anyway about ten lost tribe, there are old books in 19th century and relation with Japan
this site is degital library of meiji and taisho era. you can find many interestinf thing about ancient jew and Japanese relarion
Jew in kanji 猶太

in old chinese document says 猶=倭

1:46 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

Ancient Japan expanded to Korean Peninsula

1. The history of Korea has quite a lot of taboos. One of them is the fact that ancient Japan "ruled" Korea.

2. In this age, Japan was fought off by Goguryeo. But this history is not written in Korean history textbooks. The reason comes from the fact that Japan's expansion of this age conflicts with their delusion, which is "Ancient Korea brought first culture and civilization to Japan." .

3. There are quite a lot delusions, which are nonobjective, in historical view of Korea. But we should not leave their delusions lay, just because they are the people who "can believe only what they want to believe". Because their delusions distort the facts, often hurt national interests unreasonably, and can encourage even their territorial ambition.

4. Korean side avoid public places or objective methods to end many problems caused by their delusions. Instead of them, they try to force their "historical view" by propaganda. This applies to the kumdo problem...............

5. The expansion of ancient Japan is a desirable instance which was settled by the objective evidence.

2:17 PM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

I agree with the gist of your comments, but would say that for modern-day Chinese, Japanese, or Koreans to try to lay exclusive claim to these ancient kingdoms is missing the point.

Modern-day Englishmen are right to be proud of their heritage, but have to acknowledge that it is not only Anglo-Saxon but Celtic and Norman as well.

I also agree with you about Korean narrow nationalism when it comes to Chinese characters, and many Koreans do as well.

2:39 PM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

Inspector, you're right. When I was teaching in the US, I found that Korean and Japanese students got along quite well because of the many similarities in their cultures.

2:42 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

The culture of Japan and South Korea is quite different.
”For instance, "Minimum propriety exists in the friend. "in the Japanese mind
For instance, the Japanese doesn't open the refrigerator of friend's house without permission.
The South Korean thinks that everything is permitted if it is a friend.
The Japanese teaches this to them first
They will think that the Japanese is very cold.
The Japanese is very calm. the korean is hot temper
The foundation of their cultures is this.
Han 恨 (cultural)
The Japanese is annoyed so that this may sometimes unconsciously go out to them.
And, they are not rewarding though they make an effort.

the end of Jomon era's population was only 80,000
If a lot of people come at a time from the direction of chinese continent, d2 of Japan must be fewer. and there must exsist similar words.
only limited people might come to Japan each year for more than thousands years. I think there were less than 100 ppls because of sea
If it is this, the influence on the gene and language are also a little .And, they were not dominant as rule class.

12:34 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

the Japanese culture is needed both studying and sports because od Bushido code
the korean is only Imperial examination to advance..
that is why Korean schools reducing time spent on physical education

After school, most Japanese participate in club activities.
I think you must see this. this is the japanese way from sports

this is interesting article

at first, the Japanese teaches them the moral , manners and etc

1:05 PM  
Blogger hoihoi51 said...

and the Japanese hates korean verion of sino-ceterism。

4:09 PM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

Outsider though I am, I'm a pan-Asianist, like my co-religionist Thomas An Jung-geun. I see nationalism as an odious Western import, born of the French Revolution, which marked the end of Western Civilization.

6:38 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.