Social Democratic Party (Japan, 1926)

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The Social Democratic Party (社会民主党 Shakai Minshutō?) (a more accurate translation of the Japanese name would be "Social People's Party", but this naming is common in English texts[1]) was a political party in Japan between 1926 and 1932. Amongst the three main proletarian parties in Japan at the time, the Social Democratic Party occupied a rightist position.[2]

The party was founded on December 5, 1926 by the Japan Federation of Labour (Sōdōmei), other trade unions and the Independent Labour Association, an organization of moderate leftist intellectuals.[3] Abe Isō was elected chairman of the party. Suzuki Bunji, Nishio Suehiro, Akamatsu Katsumaro, Shimanaka Yuzō and Kagawa Toyohiko were Central Committee members of the party.[3] The elements which formed the new party had belonged to the Labour-Farmer Party, which opposed the inclusion of leftists in the latter party. Sodomei and other trade union had pulled out of the Labour-Farmer Party on October 24, 1926.[3][4] However, only four days after its foundation the new party suffered its first split, as leftwing socialists broke away and formed the Japan Labour-Farmer Party.[3]

In March 1927 the General Federation of Japanese Peasant Unions was formed as the agrarian wing of the party. (Japanese: Nihon Nomin Kumiai Sodomei) was a farmers' organization in Japan.[2][4] A women's organization linked to the party, the Social Women's League, was founded in November 1927. It changed its name to Social Democratic Women's League in July 1928.[5]

Regarding the Chinese question, the party opposed the policies of the Japanese government, demanding a recognition of the Nanking government and encouragement of the Three Principles of Sun Yat-sen.[6] In May 1927 the Social Democratic Party sent Miyazaki Ryusuke and Matsuoka Komakichi to Shanghai, where they met with Chiang Kai-shek. A solidarity agreement between the Social Democratic Party and the Kuomintang was signed.[7]

Miyazaki Ryusuke left the party in 1929, forming the National Democratic Party.[8]

The party won two seats in the 1930 national election.[9]

The party merged with the National Labour-Farmer Masses Party in July 1932, forming the Social Masses Party.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mackie, Vera C. Creating Socialist Women in Japan: Gender, Labour and Activism, 1900–1937. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. p. 230
  2. ^ a b Beckmann, George M., and Genji Okubo. The Japanese Communist Party 1922–1945. Stanford, Calif: Stanford University Press, 1969. p. 103
  3. ^ a b c d Beckmann, George M., and Genji Okubo. The Japanese Communist Party 1922–1945. Stanford, Calif: Stanford University Press, 1969. pp. 101–102
  4. ^ a b Wakukawa, Seiyei. Japanese Tenant Movements, in Far Eastern Survey, Vol. 15, No. 3 (Feb. 13, 1946), pp. 40–44
  5. ^ Mackie, Vera C. Creating Socialist Women in Japan: Gender, Labour and Activism, 1900–1937. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. p. 139
  6. ^ Young, Arthur Morgan. Imperial Japan, 1926–1938. New York: W. Morrow & Co, 1938. p. 43
  7. ^ Large, Stephen S. Showa Japan: Political, Economic and Social History 1926–1989. London: Routledge, 1998. p. 121
  8. ^ Large, Stephen S. Showa Japan: Political, Economic and Social History 1926–1989. London: Routledge, 1998. p. 122
  9. ^ Beckmann, George M., and Genji Okubo. The Japanese Communist Party 1922–1945. Stanford, Calif: Stanford University Press, 1969. p. 192
  10. ^ Mackie, Vera C. Creating Socialist Women in Japan: Gender, Labour and Activism, 1900–1937. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. p. 132