Meiji Modernizers and Turkish Reformers’ Quest of Modernism: A Comparative Analysis
This paper attempts to address the process of modernization of two emerging Asian powers, namely Japan and Turkey, with a particular reference to efforts of two notable Meiji modernizers (Okubo Toshimichi and Kido Takayoshi) in Japan and Turkish reformers (Mustafa Resid Pasha and Mehmed Fuad Pasha) in Turkey respectively in modernizing and reforming the countries. At the expense of growing Western political and economic interests in the countries, the countries’ leadership realized a drive towards change and transformation must be realized and institutionalized. In doing so, they found the models in the West through which they could emulate and implement them in their countries. Using content-textual analysis, sources for this analysis will be taken from a wide range of published scholarly works written by Turkish, Japanese, and Western writers as well as some relevant archival documents. In the end, the paper suggests that the ability of Japanese and Turkish statesmen to adapt and adopt foreign practices which were later infused with local circumstances proven to be instrumental in their quest of modernizing their respective countries by their rights despite the setbacks they had to face in doing so.
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