THE MAKING OF MODERN JAPAN, by Marius B. Jansen. Harvard University Press, 2000, 896 pp., $35 (hardback).

As a pioneer in establishing Japanese studies as a modern academic field in the United States, Jansen guided successive generations of postwar students and scholars. The distance he traveled can be seen in his career’s starting and end points. When he began studying in the U.S. Army in 1943, his subject was the obscure language of a supposedly enigmatic enemy nation.

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