This new study of the Meiji Government's controversial Education Minister and thinker, Mori Arinori, seeks to complement Ivan P. Hall's excellent earlier biography (1973) by providing an alternative interpretation of the man and his mission, namely that he is 'overwhelmingly closer to the social evolutionist's view of social change', with a considerable debt to the writings of Spencer rather than the Utalitarian philosophy of J. S. Mill. In other words, Mori was able to develop a workable philosophy of government and administration in line with the pragmatic needs of Japanese society. The book, therefore, will contribute to a radical rethink of Japanese perceptions of the Meiji reforms seen in their own terms.
'It should be of interest to both specialists of Meiji Japan and those who seek a comparative analysis of social thought in nineteeth-century Europe and Japan.' - Pacific Affairs