The Land of the Rising Sun

The last unit of study in Social Studies 8 is looking at the transition made by the Japanese from an isolated, feudal society to a country that embraced modern ideas, technology and political systems. You will see some familiar ideas ranging from a feudal social hierarchy, to ways that contact with other cultures leads to change. In fact, in this unit you will see cultural change from contact with new ideas & cultures as well as cultural change through conflict.


Unit 3 Guiding Question:

The Big Idea: A Society’s beliefs, values and knowledge base shapes its worldview, and contributes to whether it lives in isolation or adapts itself to new ideas and circumstances.


Section 1:  the Land of the Rising Sun

How did Japan’s geography influence the Japanese sense of Identity
  1. Why was Japan the Land of the Rising Sun? P. 262/263
  2. Why did Japan’s geography lend itself to cultural isolation?  What impact might this have on a culture/identity? P. 265/266
  3. Chapter 12 Student Notes
  4. Exploring Sources P.263 ~ Maps & Japanese Identity
    • Think back to when we looked at maps from Medieval Europe, and then again from Renaissance Europe.  What did these maps say about the European perspective? What was at the centre of those maps? Which areas of the world were distorted by the Europeans?

If Time:

Section 2:  Nature Shaping a Worldview

In what ways can the natural environment influence religious practices and values?

Think About It? In what ways does nature (our relationship with the environment) influence our lives here in Alberta?
1. Read Section 2