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By Ts'ui-jung Liu, James Beattie

Environment, Modernization and improvement in East Asia severely examines modernization's long term environmental historical past. utilizing local-level stories and the assumption of co-production, it indicates new frameworks for knowing as inter-related approaches environmental, social, and monetary swap throughout China and Japan. the quantity opens up new issues of comparability and trade inside East Asia and between East Asia, Europe, and North the United States. atmosphere, Modernization and improvement in East Asia provides major new views to chinese language, eastern, and international environmental background, in addition to global background and improvement studies.

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10 All these and more did indeed occur and were horrific. 11 But somehow those 400 million usually managed to eat. Superior water management,12 famine relief, forest control, rice field protection, access to New World crops, and many other creative and dynamic innovations were responsible. 13 The Yangtze Delta and neighbouring areas flourished especially (see below, and Introduction map). Evidently access to this rich agricultural area was one reason the dynasty survived so long. In the Ming total yields per farm stayed about the same,14 meaning that although the size of landholdings shrank, the combination of higher yields and better measures to maintain agricultural productivity meant that people could survive.

23. Brett L. Walker, The Conquest of Ainu Lands: Ecology and Culture in Japanese Expansion, 1590–1800 (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2006). 24. Walker, Toxic Archipelago. 25. Ian Jared Miller, Julia Adeney Thomas, and Brett L. , Japan at Nature’s Edge: The Environmental Context of a Global Power (Honolulu, HI: University of Hawai’i Press, 2013). 26. column_id=7260, accessed 3 September 2014. 27. , Environmental History: A Discourse of the History of Interrelationships Between Humans and Nature [ⅣႺผ㧦ᓬੱ⥜ ⥄ὼ⊛㑸ଥᢍㅀᖵผ] (Beijing: Commercial Press, 2011).

54 More work needs to focus on translating environmental histories from other parts of the world, as an American focus can be very limiting. If Chinese scholars have shown such interest in Western scholarship, it is timely and appropriate, we think, for Western scholars to access Chinese- and Japanese-language scholarship. A starting point is provided in this volume. Ten of the 14 contributors write primarily Introduction 15 in Japanese or Chinese, while all but three teach at institutions in East Asia.

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