Talk:History of Japan

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Former good article History of Japan was one of the good articles, but it has been removed from the list. There are suggestions below for improving the article to meet the good article criteria. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
August 25, 2015 Good article nominee Listed
October 20, 2015 Good article reassessment Delisted
Current status: Delisted good article
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The article's sourcing is a mess[edit]

Each sentence should have a citation to a specific page or small range of pages in a specific source that specifically backs up what is said. I've been working on what I could just now, but it's hard work.

For example, the text During the Shōwa period Japan became the world's largest manufacturer of automobiles and a leading producer of electronics. is currently cited to sixteen pages of Henshall and six pages of Weston. The Henshall citation is attached to an abundance of other text, all of which I'm sure is related to something somewhere in those sixteen pages, but the Weston citation is only attached to this one sentence. This makes verification very difficult. The most egregious example is "Henshall, 112–138", a 27-page range cited twelve times in the article.

I will be working on this myself in the foreseeable future, but some help would be most appreciated.

While sloppy pagination is not explicitly a violation of WP:V (although changing "over 100,000 dead" to "roughly 100,000 dead" is), it goes against the spirit of V to be this obscure with where information was taken from.

Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:31, 28 October 2015 (UTC)

Obviously the best thing would be to just rewrite the section with a range of reliable sources. There's no deadline etc zzz (talk) 13:45, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Or we could follow Sturmgewehr's advice to use these overview sources to give us an idea of what should be there, and then use more specialized sources to base our actual wording on and to verify what the general sources say. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:15, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Thing is, I'm not a topic expert on the early Showa period, and I have no reason to believe Henshall doesn't verify 90% of that material -- I'd rather just read Henshall and cite him in a more verifiable format. As an aside, Henshall's coverage of Japanese classical literature is (naturally) very superficial, and virtually everything is cited to Keene and McCullough (translations from Keene's Anthology are cited six times -- it doesn't seem like any non-translated edition of a classical work was consulted); as a tertiary source with nothing of real value to add to our article when it comes to this topic, Henshall should never have been cited for any of this. (Ironically, though, CurtisNaito would have done much better to cite Henshall 36 than "Weston, 135–139" for the information I asked him to add on Yoshitsune.) Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:17, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
I think that we can restore the part on lifetime employment. Henshall argues that it was exaggerated, but the fact that it existed in some areas until the Heisei period is clear enough. Henshall says that corporate workers were given a "promise of security" in their jobs, and the promise in question was "lifetime employment". In general I cited Henshall in blocks based on the period in order to avoid citation clutter.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:41, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Henshall argues that it was a popular misconception originating in the postwar period and ending in the 1990s. That clearly is not the same thing. The exact quote, in context, reads: Workers, at least white-collar males in major companies, were further mollified by the promise of security in the form of ‘lifetime employment’. This has been greatly exaggerated in terms of both its scale and its history. Though selective scanning of earlier history can reveal some antecedents in the Meiji period and even the Tokugawa period, it is essentially a postwar practice. Moreover, it has only ever applied at most to a quarter of the workforce. Curtis, your clipping this quote down to workers were given a "promise of security" is a gross misrepresentation of the source, and you need to stop saying otherwise. And please don't "avoid citation clutter" in the future; "citation clutter" is significantly more convenient for readers and other editors than what you have done here. Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:52, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Henshall doesn't say it was merely a popular misconception. He says it applied to a quarter of the workforce (a very substantial institution in other words) and then collapsed in the 1990s. We should restore the information on lifetime employment as it was written. I guess you've never been through a good article review before, because in my experience it's not uncommon for the reviewer to request that multiple citations to similar pages from the same book be consolidated. Someone who wants to verify the citations only needs to read a chapter or a section of a chapter to do so.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:56, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Strictly because I do not see anyone directly pointing this out, "at most to a quarter" is substantially different from "a quarter" (assuming that the italicized section above is a quote). That's me done. Evangeliman (talk) 20:16, 30 October 2015 (UTC)
@Evangeliman: I know. If I was writing this article from scratch based on what the source said, I would probably take that into account. But unfortunately the nominator makes it a consistent habit of distorting sources' wording in this manner ("over 100,000 dead" becomes "roughly 100,000 dead", and so on). Hijiri 88 (やや) 00:55, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
No, I never distorted any wording from the source. The figure of one quarter was never in the article, though Henshall does indicate that a quarter of the workforce were covered by the lifetime employment system at one time. The point Henshall makes is that lifetime employment did not cover the whole workforce, nor did it exist prior to the postwar period. However, what I put into the article was only the basic facts Henshall gave. I didn't bother delving into the areas which Henshall labeled as misconceptions.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:00, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, using your own faulty interpretation of the source's wording to argue on the talk page that your interpretation of the source was correct and that your distorted wording should be restored to the article is the same as misquoting the source in the article text. And what about changing "over 100,000 dead" to "roughly 100,000 dead"? The fact that you wrote an entire article about death toll estimates makes this very concerning -- how many of that article's uses of the word "roughly" meant "over" and "over" meant "roughly"? You say above "I never distorted any wording from the source" (my emphasis) but you very clearly changed "over 100,000" to "roughly 100,000". Stop it now. Hijiri 88 (やや) 01:10, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
100,000 is only a rough figure for the death toll. Henshall evidently rounded his estimate to the nearest round number. At the time when I consulted with the Wikipedia article on the 1923 earthquake, it gave a death toll of 105,385, so I didn't think there was anything wrong with using the word "roughly". It's fine to say over 100,000, or else to say 105,385. However, you can't say that I misrepresented the source which only gave a rounded estimate of the total, as one would expect from a summary history.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:16, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
100,000 is only a rough figure for the death toll No, it is not a "rough figure" - it is a minimum estimate. When sources give rough figures for the death toll of that earthquake they usually say "roughly 140,000". Admittedly this does include 行方不明者, but the standard practice is to include them, since why else would they go missing? You would know this if you actually read our article on the disaster rather than glancing at its poorly formatted infobox. But you shouldn't be consulting Wikipedia to begin with -- you should just be taking your reliable sources at their word and saying what they do, not trying to synthesize what they say with what a Wikipedia article quotes two employees of Kajima Corporation as saying over and above what has been historically given as the death toll estimate. Your source said "over 100,000", which does not contradict this historical death toll estimate, and you should not have distorted it so that it does contradict the historical estimate so that it matches up with a source that says something different. Hijiri 88 (やや) 01:33, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
100,000 was a rounded estimate. We shouldn't belabor this point though. The previous version was fine, but obviously I'm not opposed to using a direct quote from the original book. If we have no further disagreement over the actual text of the article, we can move on to other issues. As I said before, it's best to keep talk page discussion limited to the text of the article. Bringing up death toll estimates of the Nanking Massacre, for instance, is irrelevant. If the issues relating to article content are dealt with, then we can move on.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:40, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, we are going to continue disagreeing over every tiny point unless you show a little more humility. When you are wrong you are wrong, and should admit it and apologize. This is how I work, this is how Nishidani, Sturmgewehr88, Curly Turkey and everyone else who abides by Wikipedia's conduct policies work, but it is not what you have been doing. Every time someone finds something wrong with something you wrote, the result is an extended discussion involving you claiming either that you were not wrong in the first place, or that you "clearly meant" what your wording was changed to rather than what you actually wrote. This is not how talk page discussion should work, and it is extremely frustrating for everyone who has to work with you on this article. It is why Dennis Brown explicitly said that if you ever did this again you would be blocked for a minimum of 72 hours, and it is why Prhartcom made a compromise proposal that said that you would never do this again. You said that you accepted this proposal, but you immediately violated it, and virtually every edit you have made since then has violated it. Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:05, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Prhartcom sais "Drop all fierce objections. Change the tone." As I said, the best way to move forward is to keep discussion limited to article content. I have never asked you to apologize for the many errors and mistakes you have made which I pointed out here and elsewhere. The reason why I never asked you to apologize for your errors is because it has no direct bearing on article content. If we disagree over article content, a discussion can take place, but there's no reason why you should apologize over issues which are not actually directly related to the text of the article itself. Look at the lengthy post you wrote above. It includes not one word about the content of the article itself. My idea is that from now on we should only discuss article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:12, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
So you only recognize the part of the agreement that is binding on your opponents, and refuse to accept or even acknowledge the part of the agreement that says you will never engage in IDHT behaviour again. That's nice -- so the agreement is moot, as you have refused to accept. So why should anyone else abide by it if you are not willing to? And what "fierce objections" have I made? What "tone" needs to be changed here? I have been limiting my discussions to article content -- you are refusing to just let it go when you lave lost on a content issue like how many were killed in the earthquake. Furthermore, you promised above that you would start improving the sourcing by gradually removing the citations of huge chunks of pages. You have not been doing this: this string of edits added another citation to one of your earlier large-range references ("kofun") and consolidating a reference to the end of page 181 and the beginning of page 182, and another reference to the end of page 182 and the top of page 183, into "181-183". This is making the problem worse, not better. Please actually keep your promises. Stop engaging in IDHT behaviour, and start doing the work you promised to do (or, rather, helping do the work, as so far others have done far more than you). Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:22, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
I removed the good article nomination and have listened to all concerns expressed on this talk page. Therefore, I have fully abided by the agreement. As long as we keep discussion limited to article content, I won't ask you to apologize for your IDHT behavior or anything else. In my recent edits, I reduced one of the Henshall citations to only one page in the Kofun period section. In the Heian period, I didn't think a range of only three pages was a big deal, but if you think three pages is so many, I will reduce it. However, your citation to Keene, "Keene 1999 : 33, 65, 67–69, 74, 89", included 7 pages, and no one objected to that. I don't think you can say my edits have made the article worse, when your edits to the article have used a much longer page range than any of my recent edits.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:32, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
No, you removed the GA nomination but you have spent all the rest of your efforts undermining attempts to improve the article by posting an endless string of IDHT remarks claiming that your version more accurately reflected the sources than what it was replaced with, despite everyone disagreeing with you. As for your reference to my Keene citation, it is obvious that you have checked neither the source nor even the article text to which it is attached. The article lists four major poets who are referred to as the representative poets of their particular eras, and one more who is described as the last waka poet of note; the ref is formatted to meet the the WP:V criterion that all material be explicitly supported by the reference, and so five separate page ranges (all brief) for the four poets are cited. To compare this to your citing a chapter-length discussion of an entire era and adding it to every statement in the article related to that era, and doing this for every section in the article, is both absurd and deeply hypocritical. Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:11, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
No, that's not true. If a range of seven pages is acceptable for poets, there is no reason why three pages aren't acceptable for a single topic relating to the economic difficulties of the Heian period. Again, you're just casting aspersions instead of focusing on article content, though you have been told by many other users that doing this is not useful for improving the article. As I said, from now on we should stick to article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:18, 31 October 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── First off, I apologize for my misremembering. The Keene ref you referred to had nothing to do with Kamakura poetry, but rather was for the literature of the Nara period. You or someone else appears to have now removed the citation in question and replaced it with a hodgepodge of unreliable, non-specialist sources like Rhee, Henshall and Totman. Please explain this. If you do not, I will reinsert the far-better citation of Keene. Furthermore, your analogy is deeply flawed, as what you did and are still defending is not equivalent to citing "Keene 1999 : 33, 65, 67–69, 74, 89" but more like citing the same pages in the format "Keene 1999 : 33, 65-89". When CT, Prhartcom and I asked you to fix the messy refs in the article, we meant the ones you had added to sources you at least claim to have read. We did not mean that we wanted you to track down any kinda-sorta-maybe similar refs added by other users to books you haven't read and remove those. Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:39, 31 October 2015 (UTC)Edit: Sorry. Ctrl+Fed "nihon" and misread the results. Curtis, when you make a mistake or say something wrong, maybe you too should own up and admit it so we can all move on? How about we try that? Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:47, 31 October 2015 (UTC)

I was told to fix the citations in general, not specifically the ones I added. You were criticizing me for including a page range of three pages in one of my citations, and so I fixed it. However telling me that I was making the article worse was clearly wrong, otherwise you were making the article disastrously worse by citing "Keene 1999 : 320–324, 650–651, 674, 676, 680–681, 700–705, 735–736", which goes through nineteen pages. As I said, stick to article content and constructive criticism. I don't think that you should criticize me so strongly for citing sources in the article in the exact same way you have been citing sources.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:49, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Again, you're in a glass house regarding "Keene 1999 : 320–324, 650–651, 674, 676, 680–681, 700–705, 735–736", because it may be nineteen pages but it's the smallest range possible to support the material to which it is attached. If it was formatted like the refs you added in August it would look like "Keene 1999 : 320–324, 650–736" -- that's ninety-two pages, seventy-three of which are unrelated to what our article says.
Admittedly, at the time I was trying to mirror your one or two refs per paragraph style, so I consolidated it into one ref where my normal preferred style would be to have one or two facts per sentence and one ref per sentence. I will break it down a bit better later.
But this doesn't change the fact that, rather than admitting that one of the article's main problems is a result of your obscure and barely verifiable sourcing style, you are grabbing at straws trying to place equal blame for this problem on me.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 05:37, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
I used the sourcing style which was recommended to me before I wrote the article. Naturally, I use a different style depending on what is asked of me. However, none of the sources I have cited are obscure. All of them are high quality, reliable histories.CurtisNaito (talk) 05:42, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, please learn to read English. When I said "your obscure and barely verifiable sourcing style" I was not making a general comment about the quality of the sources (though none of them are as good for classical literature as Keene). I meant what I said: your sourcing style is "obscure" ("hard to make out or define; vague") and so is barely verifiable. And no one requested you to do that here: if you had evidence of such you would have presented it already. Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:24, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Well as I said, your sourcing was the exact same as mine until recently. However, I am now changing my sourcing style to a different format. I already quoted above the fact that I was told by a good article reviewer that the original citation style I was using was the appropriate format for good level articles. I was using the citation style recommended to me by users more experienced than either of us.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:29, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
No, even when I was trying to make my refs look like yours I still only listed the pages that either verified the article material or provided relevant information closely related to the article material (my ref not only verified that Shunzei was the representative poet of his age but also mentioned that he was commissioned to compile an imperial anthology and that he was the most eminent such compiler in three centuries). Several of your "exact same" refs consist of random chunks of twenty or more pages attached to about a dozen simple factual statements that may or may not be verifiable somewhere in those twenty pages. Further: Which user told you that "good level articles" have some kind of uniform citation style? If that is what they said they are wrong, whether or not they are "more experienced" than me. And I seem to recall the Iwane Matsui article being promoted in spite of your refusing to even name the authors of your sources and needlessly listing the names of the same books dozens of times in the references. Wikipedia does not have a standard citation style: each article uses a style best-suited to it, with more verifiable styles generally being preferred. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:21, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Yes, citation style can vary from article to article. The Iwane Matsui article was promoted because that particular citation style was fine for the purposes of that article. The original citation style I used in this article was also not wrong. It was recommended to me as a fitting style to use for good level articles, and it was fairly easy to verify the citations since they all referred back to same chapter dealing with the same topic. It was no different at all from citing nineteen pages of Keene as you did.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:29, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, both our article and Henshall's book are narrated in roughly chronological order, so your citation style of citing essentially an entire chapter of Henshall for each section of our article is about as useless for V purposes as not giving page numbers at all. The only reason Sturmvogel and Calvin didn't tell you the same thing is that neither of them tried to check any of your sources (hence why this article was delisted and Iwane Matsui probably should be delisted) and so likely didn't notice the problem. You need to tell us exactly what page you got your information so the rest of us can verify that no more misrepresentation of sources has happened than that which has already been rooted out. Expecting us to read all of the books from start to finish is asking too much. Hijiri 88 (やや) 09:09, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
You haven't found any instances of misrepresentation yet. The reason why this article was delisted had nothing to do with sourcing. Prhartcom clearly told you that the sourcing issue had already been resolved before the review was over. Both the articles you mentioned were thoroughly spotchecked. It's strange that you would accuse me of IDHT behavior, even though you constantly repeat yourself over this issue, even though you have been informed of the situation many times. At any rate, I am changing the citation style to a different format, though you can hardly criticize me for previously using the same citation style that you also used.CurtisNaito (talk) 09:15, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Just to briefly chime in (and then leave again): I agree completely with this observation. It was difficult to verify the sources for this reason stated. A typical footnote of this article inexplicably points to multiple pages of text, occasionally more than one book even, and often shared with other footnotes. This should not be the case. If a user wishes to learn more, they should be able to click on the footnote and get the exact page number of the very book that contains the cited information. The footnote should usually not be shared. Anyone doing a source review or wishing to learn more should not be presented with what the article is currently presenting. For good examples of how to do it, see any article I have written or any article Curly Turkey has written. Prhartcom (talk) 18:10, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Alright I'll gradually work towards splitting the citations. Incidentally, this is contrary to what I've been repeatedly told during good reviews up to now. During one recent good article review I was told "You've got cites splattered all over the article that can be profitably consolidated, so go through the article thoroughly and get rid of them." However, for the purposes of this article, I will de-consolidate the citations.CurtisNaito (talk) 18:50, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
For verifiability purposes, the above quote is from Sturmvogel 66, on May 31 of this year, on the Iwane Matsui GA review.[1] It appears to refer only to cases where "every fact in a paragraph is derived from the same source", and obviously could not when multiple sources are used for a single paragraph. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:36, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
As I quoted above, he told me to consolidate my citations to eliminate clutter and told me that by doing so I could avoid needing to cite every sentence and possibly even avoid citing every paragraph. It's common, however, for other good article reviewers to say the same sorts of things. This was the style I used when consolidating citations to Henshall, so that several sentences of text were all verifiable to the same section of the same source. I usually write up articles in the way which is mostly likely to please a future good article reviewer, though it's not always easy to tell because different people prefer different citation styles.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:46, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
Just to ensure I am not leading you in the wrong direction (or to ensure that GA reviewer does not), let's check WP:CITE. Prhartcom (talk) 20:55, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, while I don't doubt what you are saying is true, that was one reviewer's opinion. Calvin999 expressed the opinion in his review of this very page that the citations should perhaps be attached to each sentence. That was his only reference to the sourcing in his very short and superficial review, but he did essentially agree with me on this point; he just didn't think it was the article-breaking issue that I do. Hijiri 88 (やや) 21:47, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Calvin999 had told me in a previous review that he wanted citations attached to every sentence, but I was subsequently told in multiple good and featured article reviews by other users to not do that any more. When Calvin reviewed this article, he clarified that one citation per sentence was actually just his personal preference, not a rule. Therefore, I wrote this article according to Wikipedia guidelines.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:52, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
I'd like to see what those reviewers actually said. I've been through nearly fifty GA reviews and have never been told to do something so ridiculous. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:11, 28 October 2015 (UTC)
Calvin999 informed me that putting a citation at the end of every sentence was his personal preference, stating "Personally, I cite every sentence. It makes it easier to verify information. You don't have to cite every sentence". As opposed to Calvin's personal preference, most reviewers have a strong opinion that, "You can read the policy for yourself at WP:CITE; nowhere does it state that every sentence needs to be cited and I've even had objections from some other reviewers that once per paragraph isn't strictly required either." I myself once believed that a citation at the end of every sentence was generally preferable, but by now I've been informed by a good number of reviewers that, according to policy, even one per paragraph is not required. Since then, I have made great effort to consolidate my citations into as few as possible at the end of paragraphs.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:29, 29 October 2015 (UTC)
You've had some very bad advice. Of course every paragraph needs references - that is fundamental. For example, the folks at ITN won't link any article to the main page otherwise. Beyond that, common sense should be followed. If every sentence in a paragraph is going to require 2 or 3 (or more) cites, some repeated in alternate following sentences, then just dump them at the end of the paragraph. That's not likely to be the case in this article, obviously. zzz (talk) 01:50, 29 October 2015 (UTC)
At the very least, you're misunderstanding the advice. Every word in the article needs to be cited, but not every sentence requires an inline citation. If two or more sentences in a row in a paragraph are taken from the same source (the same page or short range of pages), then you are only required to put the inline citation after the last of those sentences. There is no rule against doing it for every single single, though, and many editors prefer to do that for a variety of reasons, but unless you have a good reason it's best to avoid it, as it makes for aesthetically ugly clutter. Globbing everything together at the end of the paragraph covering a huge page range is a terrible thing to do (though not technically against any rule). Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:23, 29 October 2015 (UTC)

The problem still isn't solved[edit]

The huge, almost useless chunks of literature being cited for each bit of our text appear to have been mostly removed, but the citation style still isn't ideal. In my opinion, each sentence of the body should have a citation, unless that sentence is a caption on a picture (The reputed site of Narihira's residence, near Karasuma Oike Station) or a summary of the sourced material either immediately before or immediately after (The location of Narihira's grave is uncertain). This is just my opinion, and I'm sure others disagree and think that if an entire paragraph's text is directly based on a single source that source can be cited once at the end of the paragraph. But right now a large portion of this article consists of paragraphs where the first several sentences are cited to a single citation, and the next several are cited to another. This makes it difficult to know whether a datum is derived from the source immediately before it or the source cited several lines down. Can I assume that in all cases the information is taken from the "next" source cited? I guess I can fix it myself with a copy-paste job if I can assume this, but I really don't like doing that... Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:53, 5 November 2015 (UTC)

Yes, each citation applies to the information and sentences preceding it. As I noted, the idea that every sentence should be cited is not accepted by most Wikipedia users. Rather, a citation is expected to apply to all the text preceding the citation.CurtisNaito (talk) 10:10, 6 November 2015 (UTC)

Section divisions[edit]

I don't dislike the recent edits, though I'm not a topic expert and haven't source-checked it yet. But I'm a bit concerned about the formatting. It's possible that the article is becoming more all-over-the-place and less readable with each expansion, and the relevance of the additions may be lost on our readers. (I'm probably more responsible for this than anyone else, for what it's worth.)

What do people think about splitting the article into sections on, say, political, social and cultural history?

Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:45, 5 November 2015 (UTC)

  • I suggested that above, so obviously I like the idea. It's a very long article that will likely get quote longer, so I think it'd be a good idea to break it into more digestible chunks. Few will read such a long article from top to bottom. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 11:55, 5 November 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, this was meant to be its own section, but I forgot to fill in the first box (I was getting off a train). As for reading the article top to bottom, you're right. There's a lot of stuff that deserves to be mentioned, but is difficult to fit into the chronological "story" that this article currently tells. I blamed Curtis for the dodgy placement of the Fujiwara no Teika reference, and I still am not convinced Teika wasn't mistaken for a Zen monk of the late thirteenth century, but really fitting that kind of content in anywhere in the current format would be problematic. Probably two thirds of the current article is "social" or "cultural" rather than political, so dividing it in three is probably best. Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:38, 5 November 2015 (UTC)

I think that subheadings for social and political history are better placed within each chronological period. Eras like the Edo period or Meiji period can have subheadings for "cultural developments" or "political institutions". We should maintain a structure based primarily on chronological periods, rather than topics, which is in accordance with other featured or good articles on the history of certain regions. History of Gibraltar and History of Singapore use this format. The featured article History of Minnesota is not strictly chronological, but subheadings for topics like cultural and political history are placed underneath chronological periods like "Modern Minnesota".CurtisNaito (talk) 10:10, 6 November 2015 (UTC)

I think that works better for certain things than for others---Edo class divisions are best done in the Edo section, but women's issues, say, don't fit neatly anywhere and would be better separated out, where they can be better summarized and contextualized. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 10:51, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
@Curtis: Is every period going to have separate subsections for "cultural developments" and "social developments"? If not, who determines which periods' cultural and/or social developments merit their own subsections? Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:32, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
Everything in the article is ultimately determined by Wikipedia users. My personal opinion is that we should focus primarily on the cultural and social events which are mentioned prominently in general overviews of Japanese history, but ultimately its up to user opinion. A subsection can be tailored to each period that needs it, depending on what sort of major cultural events, if any, were occurring at that era, and they don't all have to be called "cultural developments". I suppose we could tack a section on women's history onto the bottom of the article, but I still think that the large majority of political or social events should be covered in or near their relevant chronological sections. As I noted, all other good or featured level article about the history of certain regions are organized predominantly by chronological period, rather than by topic.CurtisNaito (talk) 20:00, 6 November 2015 (UTC)

And now for something completely different[edit]

What general overviews of Japanese history? The books you seem to be referring to are short general readership books, and while you refer to their authors as "historians" inline most of them are Japanologists known for their translations of literary works and the like. Hijiri 88 (やや) 01:49, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
All the ones I mentioned like Perez, Henshall, and Totman are certainly historians. They are university professors who have authored numerous books and articles on Japanese history. Their works provide a useful basis to know what is notable for this article.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:09, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
All three of them either are or were professors of "Japanese language and culture". If they are "historians" (and I'm not saying they aren't -- the word has a number of meanings) then Donald Keene is as well -- and in fact is the most influential "historian" of Japan in the last 50 years. "Japanese studies" -- which encompasses history and a number of other disciplines -- is the field all these scholars work(ed) in. It is not wrong to call the authors of books on history "historians", per se, but to do so in the article text in order to distinguish them from "literary scholars" and the like is inappropriate. Japanese scholars with doctorates and/or teaching positions in 日本史 or 国史 (as opposed to 日本語日本文学 or 国語国文学 are different, of course -- have you considered consulting any Japanese general histories of Japan? Hijiri 88 (やや) 05:52, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
The books I consulted were standard histories which received good reviews from other scholars. All three of the aforementioned historians have written works of history and peer reviewed articles on subjects beyond just Japanese language and culture. I could use general histories written in Japanese, but in general English Wikipedia recommends English language sources be used when the same information is available in English, as it is when it comes to a general overview of Japanese history. These sorts of sources, like the books written by historians Conrad Totman and Louis Perez, are the best kinds of sources to consult for an article of this nature.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:01, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
The books I consulted were standard histories which received good reviews from other scholars. Citation needed. All three of the aforementioned historians have written works of history and peer reviewed articles on subjects beyond just Japanese language and culture. 'Citation needed. in general English Wikipedia recommends English language sources be used [for deciding on section titles and inclusion criteria for overview articles] Citation needed! when the same information is available in English Yet you keep removing my Japanese sources even when yours don't give the same information? These sorts of sources, like the books written by historians Conrad Totman and Louis Perez, are the best kinds of sources to consult for an article of this nature. No, Sansom is still better, and even after half a century his work still has more general acceptance the university libraries and course syllabi, let alone bibliographies for other works, of the western world. Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:22, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, just to cite a small sample, Monumenta Nipponica called Totman's book "the best single-volume examination of Japan's history available", The Journal of Asian Studies said that Perez's book "achieves [its] goals by providing a succinct and engaging overview of Japan's development", and Japan Forum stated that Henshall's book is "a history in tune with much newer historical research... The language, layout and content are all well chosen to meet [its] objective." I could cite numerous more, but the point is that all these books received numerous positive reviews from scholarly journals. All these historians have written books outside the field of Japanese language and culture, including Totman's "Politics in the Tokugawa Bakufu", Perez's "Japan Comes of Age: Mutsu Munemitsu and the Revision of the Unequal Treaties", or Henshall's "Historical Dictionary of Japan to 1945". Short, overview histories are the best kind of sources to use in order to give us perspective on what events and people to include here and which to leave out. I made a point of citing the highest quality sources.CurtisNaito (talk) 07:05, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Short, overview histories are the best kind of sources to use in order to give us perspective on what events and people to include here and which to leave out. No, they are the best kind of sources to use in order to give us the perspectives of those particular authors. Compare the coverage of the three sources you cite with each other, or with the other general histories written in English, Japanese and other languages, and you will find radical differences in what they chose to leave out. And Perez's book is hardly "short", at least compared to Henshall -- the latter being the worst for our present purpose because its length. Hijiri 88 (やや) 07:31, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
The authors have good credentials to write history and their books were well received. Therefore, they present more or less the scholarly consensus, not just their own views. Sansom is not quite as good of a source for this purpose because his history consists of three volumes which only go up to 1867. Therefore it obviously includes a vast quantity of events and people which do not actually belong in a Wikipedia article of this length. Briefer works like Henshall and Perez are much superior sources to use for the purposes of this article.CurtisNaito (talk) 07:38, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, Sansom wrote two general histories of Japan: the former was shorter than Perez, if I recall, and the latter maybe a little over twice the length of Perez. (The MN review you quoted above refers to the shorter of Sansom's works, which was in one volume×, in its opening sentence, but you ironically appear to be unaware that this work even exists.) Henshall, on the other hand, is one third the length of Perez. You can't say "briefer works like Henshall and Perez" when Perez is far closer in size and detail to both of Sansom's works than he is to Henshall. Furthermore, you shouldn't base your judgement of Sansom's usefulness as a source based on the catchy title appended to his third volume. If you actually read its final chapters (you clearly haven't) you would see that the cover's "to 1867" is essentially arbitrary. And it is also completely irrelevant to our coverage of the first 1,200 years of Japan's recorded history anyway. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:50, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Sansom's work covering all aspects of Japanese history was three volumes, and not only does Sansom's third volume not cover past 1867, but the first volume contains almost no material from prior to the Asuka period. By contrast, both Perez and Henshall are about 240 pages and they cover all Japanese history up to recent events. The MN review I quoted above was a review of Totman's book, not Sansom's. The fact remains that, for the purposes of this article, the books of Henshall, Totman, and Perez rank among the best sources available, evidently superior to Sansom.CurtisNaito (talk) 16:02, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Sorry. You are right. I got Perez mixed up with Totman. So Perez joins Henshall in the list of sources that we can't use because they are completely bare-bones and do not give the amount of detail we need. Totman's book does not "cover all aspects of Japanese history" in a manner that Sansom's does not; as the MN review clearly states, Sansom's was a "cultural history" and Totman's an "ecological history". And why exactly are we focusing on "single-volume" histories here, anyway? What on earth does the formatting that was chosen for the binding of the book have to do with the scope of our article!? Perez and Henshall's books are both short, high-school-student/general-audience books of around 200 pages; Sansom's Short Cultural History and Totman's book are both around 600 pages; Sansom's three-volume work is around 1,200 pages: Totman is clearly not the same length of book as Perez and Henshall, if we are going to say that Sansom is "too long"! Further, I would ask you again: Have you read Sansom's three-volume work? Your comments on it here seem like you just read the title that appeared on the cover, and then read maybe the first ten pages of the first volume and the last ten pages of the third, and judged the book to be "insufficient" for our purposes here. You are claiming that material that is not included in "short general histories" should not be included in the article, but your criteria for what qualifies as a "short general history" are extremely unclear, as you include Totman's ecological history but not Sansom's cultural history... Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:07, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
Yes I have read Sansom's entire three-volume work. However, whereas Sansom's one-volume work focuses on cultural history, Totman's one-volume work covers all fields. It actually covers cultural, military, political, social, and economic history in a fairly even manner. Overview histories are certainly the best sources to consult for an article like this, since they help us gauge the relative importance of events and people, whereas longer works like Sansom include excess details which clearly should not be in this manner of article. Sources like Perez and Henshall are ideal here.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:13, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
Yes, and Sansom's work covers ecological, military, political, social and economic history in a fairly even manner -- as in it doesn't focus on them, because it is a cultural history. Anyway, this article is never going to be a 200-page book, a 600-page book or a 1,200-page book. We have to summarize one way or the other. This has already been done -- it had already been pretty soundly accomplished years before you made your first edit -- but we now need to decide exactly which "excess details" belong in the article. Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:36, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
A complete 200-page book gets closer to the most pertinent details than a three-volume work which does not cover a substantial portion of Japanese history. I did have to shorten the article earlier in order for it to pass good article review, because the previous version was too long according to Wikipedia policies. However, even now we should be avoiding excess details as much as possible, and using high quality overview histories like the ones I have included is a good way to achieve this.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:41, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
"substantial" in what sense? I know you are mostly interested in modern Japanese history, but the period you are talking about should not be much more than 10% of our article, so why you keep honing in on it when the rest of us have moved on is baffling. Are you actually interested in bringing this article to GA standard or not? Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:24, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm interested in all periods of Japanese history, and I never said I was honing in on any one period. What I said was that we should consult the most reliable sources rather than relying on personal opinions alone. Giving 10% space to the eventful modern period is not quite enough. Both Henshall and Perez devote about 50 pages to the period between prehistory and 1600 and then 150 pages to the period between 1600 and the present. It's useful to look at overview histories to give us an idea of how much weight to give to each section of the article.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:33, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm interested in all periods of Japanese history Curtis, that would be a lot easier to believe if 90% of your edits to articles on Japanese history outside of the Sino-Japanese War and the Greater East Asia War hadn't been to articles you followed me to after I nominated your Taminato article for deletion, and if you didn't make mistakes about five times more often when dealing with classical history (the bits that are only ever covered accurately in Japanese-language works and highly technical works). Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:05, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
::::::::::::::::::::::::I never followed you to any articles, and I've been editing articles on all periods of Japanese history from the beginning. You talk about mistakes, but so far you haven't managed to provide any proof of your claims. The point I have always been making is that we should rely on the views of scholars and not our own views. And again, the point I was making above is that we can determine weighting in this article using not solely our personal opinions, but rather, the works of scholars. There is probably no single volume work of Japanese history in existence which does not give the bulk of its space to the modern period, and this fact is consistent enough that it must indicate that the modern period is objectively more important and more deserving of space. Not every one volume history of Japan gives the modern period a whole three quarters of its space, but most do. I think the article's current weighting is fine.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:17, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
You followed me to virtually every article you have ever edited on pre-modern Japanese history. In the last of those you actually tried to make the article on Japan's first emperor into an article about World War II! And I think enough evidence has been provided of your countless mistakes on this article alone, let alone the other articles, including some on your preferred topic (misreading "ultranationalist" as the antithetical term "pan-Asianist") Please try to stay on topic -- we don't need to talk about your past mistakes, or even your current ones. This thread is supposed to be about section divisions in the present article. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:01, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
I agree that we should stay on topic. That's why I haven't brought up any of your mistakes either, including those in this article. However, providing links to all the numerous sourcing errors you have made in other articles is particularly irrelevant. For the record though, I didn't follow you to any of those articles, and I have been editing articles in that area since long before I met you. In order to stay on topic, we should be discussing this article, and the point I made earlier was that this article is not weighted as heavily to the modern period as most Japanese history books are. We can't say that there is a problem with the current article's relative weighting if we compare it to the weighting preferred by historians of Japan, whose opinions are more valid than our own.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:11, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
That's why I haven't brought up any of your mistakes either, including those in this article. What!? What mistakes? I have made mistakes over the years, but none you would have noticed (most of them were before you registered an account), and certainly none in this dispute. Hijiri 88 (やや) 22:09, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
I pointed out a wide variety of problems with your use of sources when they were relevant to article content, as you yourself can see if you read the previous topics of discussion on this talk page. As I said, I feel we should stick closely to the wording used by the relevant sources and rely more on the consensus of scholars than on our own opinions. However, at this point I think we should keep discussion limited to article content and your last two posts above don't say anything about that.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:14, 9 November 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Let's not dwell too much on the page counts of books—books must be self-contained, whereas Wikipedia is hyperlinked. This means that these books will end up dwelling on certain details that would be best linked to in a Wikipedia article, and will ignore others rather than leave readers dangling. These books don't all present Japanese history in the same way, either: Tsutsui's Companion to Japanese History does the chronological thing for the first four parts, and then for the fifth (for about a third of the page count) it gives a "Themes in Japanese History" section—and for good reason, I think. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 11:13, 8 November 2015 (UTC)

The large majority of the works I consulted do give more than 10% focus to the modern period though. Tsutsui is not an exception in this case. Prehistory to 1600 is covered in 60 pages whereas the modern period is covered in nearly 300 pages.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:39, 8 November 2015 (UTC)

  • I agree that the modern period probably deserves more words-per-century than other periods, though we should keep in mind that many general histories are aimed at a readership that wants to read more about World War II and less about ancient court politics (Sansom is the polar opposite). Our goals and readership are somewhat different, plus we have the advantage of having abundant hyperlinks to the juicy details, which means we will summarize in a more concise manner. We also want to avoid WP:RECENTISM, though it can be hard to judge—just how important will the Senkaku dispute or Abe's political wranglings seem a century from now? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:26, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
I agree with everything Curly Turkey just said. The modern period does need more words per centuryinte than the rest. But devoting two thirds of the article to the modern period because some other (still relatively obscure compared to Sansom) books gave particular focus to the war years is completely out of the question. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:04, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
The article's current balance seems fine though, if we compare it with any recent history books. Sansom's book was three volumes, but the importance of the modern period is evident in any one-volume history. This is so consistent that it is not likely due only to the alleged difficulties in summarizing recent events or the need to appeal to the interests of readers. Perez, Henshall, and Tsutsui all give three quarters of their space in the chronological narrative to the modern period, whereas the cited one volume histories by Meyer and Walker give two thirds of their space to the modern period.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:30, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
It should be noted that CurtisNaito is now openly requesting that I be indefinitely blocked from editing Wikipedia over this dispute. Now who is "not focusing on content"? Hijiri 88 (やや) 22:16, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
The talk page of this article should be reserved for discussions of article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:20, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
(Edit conflict) Yes, so why don't you actually try discussing article content for a change, rather than expressing your random opinions on the topic and the sources discussing it? You are the only one here who does not have positive aspirations to improve this article (you have said numerous times here and elsewhere that you think the article is fine the way it is) and who is refusing to engage in constructive discussion. Every other user here is trying to discuss improvements to this article, and you apparently think they will stop if you can somehow manage to get me blocked. Hijiri 88 (やや) 22:36, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
So please discuss, rather than shutting down attempts at discussion. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:34, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
At first we were discussing weighting of the article, but I don't know why irrelevant matters kept on being brought up by Hijiri88. The above posts have nothing to do with article weighting, though I have repeatedly requested a focus on article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:40, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
You find that frustrating, eh? It's exasperating when you keep trying to talk about content and someone keeps shutting down the attempt, don't you think? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:44, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't believe I made any comments that were unrelated to article content, except to advocate that we maintain focus on article content. In this section, we were initially discussing weighting of the article, and I would have preferred it if we had stayed on that subject.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:47, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, we know that's not true from the number of discussions that have been buried already. Let's see you discuss then, instead of carrying on like this. Lot's of unaddressed points you've been avoiding discussing—pick one and go. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:56, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, what still needs to be resolved?CurtisNaito (talk) 22:59, 10 November 2015 (UTC)
we were initially discussing weighting of the article CurtisNaito, what on earth are you talking about? Are you even reading our comments before responding? This thread was supposed to be about division of the article sections into "themes", and you (not me or Curly Turkey) kept changing the subject to relative weight of classical and modern history. Please focus on the topic at hand already -- this has been going on for three months. Hijiri 88 (やや) 00:55, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
No, the posts below are about themes. The posts immediately above were about weighting, which was the issue you yourself brought up before you started talking about non-content related issues for some reason.CurtisNaito (talk) 00:58, 11 November 2015 (UTC)
Yes, the posts immediately above are about weighting because you kept trying to shift the topic away from what the rest of us are trying to discuss. I have no idea why you did that -- or why you did it on Talk:Korean influence on Japanese culture, Talk:Emperor Jimmu or any of those other pages in the past either, for that matter. Can we please focus on the topic at hand? I actually was going to propose during the ANI thread that you agree to retract your nomination, and we all work to improve the article until November 30 before re-nominating it, but with all these ceaseless distractions it looks highly unlikely we will meet that deadline now, and the now undeniable fact that one of us is actively campaigning for another of us to be indefinitely blocked (something I have never done, on an article talk page, noticeboard or ArbCom case) makes working on improving the article extremely difficult. Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:05, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
No, I focused on content on both of the two talk pages you mentioned above. I'm not campaigning for anything, so there's no sense in you continually accusing me of that. I think we were on topic regarding article content until you started making that accusation. In future posts, we should only discuss potential changes to the article, which is something I have said repeatedly. If the content-based issue discussed above is more or less settled, then we should move on to something else.CurtisNaito (talk) 18:37, 12 November 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, how many times have I started threads about you on the admin noticeboards? How many times have I shown up at noticeboards in which you were involved and randomly requested that you be blocked? How many times did I support an ArbCom proposal that you be indefinitely blocked? Oh right -- I have never done anything of the sort, despite you doing so to me at least five times so far. Pointing out on an article talk page that your article edits (and talk page comments) are disruptive and need to stop is not at all inappropriate -- it is in fact generally preferred over edit-warring. Pointing out that you are attempting to silence opposition by creating a chilling effect and force your preferred version of the article through is a bit more of a grey area, but the one who can't respond directly to other users' queries and veers off-topic with every post should be the last one to start throwing stones...Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:11, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
I have always been swift to respond to user inquiries, and I have never attempted to silence any opposition. However, these sort of false accusations distract from the purpose of article talk pages, which is to discuss article content. That's the point I have been making above.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:44, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
What "false accusations"? Everything I said above is completely true and accurate. Ironically, your accusing me of making "false accusations" is itself a false accusation. If you have never attempted to silence any opposition, then what do you call your requesting on at least five occasions that I be blocked, topic-banned, page-banned and/or site-banned? Hijiri 88 (やや) 15:22, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, I have never been banned for harassment, unlike a certain other user. However, I think that this talk page should be reserved for discussions of article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 15:47, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
"a certain other user"? Who is that? Are you talking about me? Because I also have never been banned for harassment. Anyway, the rest of us are trying to discuss article content, but you keep making vicious attacks against us off this page, and refusing to engage in constructive discussion on this page, making it extremely difficult to discuss article content with you. Hijiri 88 (やや) 00:39, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I have never made any attacks. Not only are these accusations untrue, but they have nothing to do with article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:11, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

Your attacks (which generally boil down to "Please ban this user from Wikipedia for disagreeing with me") are well documented, and I have no interest in discussing them further with you. Just to say that your attempt to create a chilling effect to silence your "enemies" will not work, so please give it up. Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:37, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

I never said anything like that, nor did I make any attacks on you. These false accusations only distract from discussion of article content.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:53, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

Back to the subject at hand[edit]

That would be a fine approach if all the bits fit nice and neatly into the existing divisions. They don't: women's issues, burakumin, many phases of art history, and many other things only become near-incomprehensible if their developments are peppered throughout the main narrative. We need to aim for comprehensibility, not just "having all the stuff". Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:33, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
I guess if something truly doesn't fit into a period, then it can be tacked onto the bottom. However, in English Wikipedia there is no good or featured article about the history of a region or country which is not almost entirely organized based on chronological period. Since the other articles manage to fit social events into this framework, it can probably be done for Japan as well. Many of the overviews of Japanese history which are cited as sources for this article also insert social events into the narrative as they occur chronologically. Perez and Henshall, for instance, do not include special chapters for just cultural or social events. Burakumin is a topic which could be separated into periods, for instance. Perez believes that the burakumin class originated in the Muromachi period. The burakumin class was formally abolished as part of the Western-style reforms of the Meiji period. Burakumin political activism grew during the postwar era at the same time as the movements for women's rights and Ainu rights.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:53, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
You're really not understanding—yes, we could play Procrustes and cram Burakumin (and any other subject) into the sections as they are, and would result in a shattered, difficult-to-follow mess. Or we could sum up the whole history of the Burakumin into an easy-to-follow paragraph or two. As you can see from what I'm working on in the subpage I created, the status of women doesn't fall neatly into periods, either—their status saw a slow, steady decline over the centuries that follow the ritsuryō. I summed up in two sentences what covers a span of three periods in the article. How would you propose schmeershing that into the main chronology? If we want comprehensibility, then we want to separate this stuff out, where it can be summed out more readably and in better context. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:00, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
@Curly Turkey: We already tried such a thing with literature, and Fujiwara no Shunzei somehow wound up being discussed in the latter half of our section on the Kamakura period, I guess because Curtis felt he wasn't important enough to be discussed before the founding of the Kamakura shogunate. Hijiri 88 (やや) 01:54, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
We have to use our heads—for instance, it makes sense to talk about artistic and class developments in the Edo period, as many of the developments are closely tied to the era itself. Other developments don't—Azuchi-Momoyama art lasted at least a generation after the Azuchi-Momoyama perid ended, and other developments (liek women's status) really can't be mapped to the era divisions at all. These things could be worked out if we put the brakes on and discussed these things, even if it took years. Really, there's no reason to rush an article of this size, complexity, and importance—if it takes years, it takes years, but it shouldn't be called "finished" until it's finished. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:52, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
As I said though, I'm sure that the vast majority can be fit into the chronological periods without any loss of readability or comprehensibility. If organization primarily by topic was the best way to deal with histories of certain regions, then one would think most Wikipedia articles would be organized that way. In reality, virtually all Wikipedia articles on the history of certain regions are organized chronologically based on period. When it comes to this article, for instance, information on the burakumin fits neatly with other topics in each period and wouldn't really benefit from being moved to a separate section. You could try tacking a section on Azuchi Momoyama art to the end of the article, but I think it would work just as well to add a section on art to the Azuchi Momoyama period and then just mention that some trends carried on into subsequent periods. Issues like this aren't likely to take years to resolve.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:09, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
CurtisNaito, I'm not saying "wouldn't it be neat" to do this—I've identified concrete problems to which I've proposed a concrete solution.
information on the burakumin fits neatly with other topics in each period and wouldn't really benefit from being moved to a separate section: sure, if you don't care about comprehensibility or context. Otherwise, doing so is a terrible idea. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 03:25, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure why any other articles on the history of certain regions have not run into the same problems though. History of Minnesota is featured level, and while it does include special sections on cultural, economic, and political developments, they all generally fit within broad chronological categories. Almost every article on Wikipedia about the history of a certain country, like say History of France or History of the United States, manage to find a way to fit virtually everything into chronological periods. Whether we are talking about Japan's political evolution, demographic change, or economic development, these are all trends which have lasted throughout Japanese history, but for the purposes of organization, chronological periods are convenient to readers. If that weren't the case, one would think at least one Wikipedia on the history of a country would have a special section outside of chronological order dealing exclusively with social, cultural, or political trends. The status of the burakumin changed over time just like all other groups in society, but I don't think it harms comprehensibility to split events which are relevant to a certain historical period into that period. I noted above that, in the case of the burakumin, the developments which are mentioned most prominently in general histories of Japan can be fit very neatly into relevant historical periods.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:46, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
So we're on this treadmill again, are we? I've demonstrated concrete issues and provided concrete solutions— I'm not going to keep repeating myself.
in the case of the burakumin, the developments which are mentioned most prominently in general histories of Japan can be fit very neatly into relevant historical periods: which results in an incomprehensible mess, disrupting the main narrative while slicing up the burakumin narrative into poorly contextualized pieces interspersed throughout. Readers are supposed to hold this thread through tens of thousands of bytes of readable text? Come on, CurtisNaito, you can't seriously tell me you don't understand what I'm saying. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:12, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, I figure that the burakumin is not the only issue which reappears throughout Japanese history. There are many topics in Japanese political or economic history which reappear from period to period. The shogun, the samurai, population statistics, political parties, Shintoism, Buddhism, and poetry all contain specific topics which reappear in various eras. Since no other national history article on Wikipedia separates social history outside of the chronological pattern, I think that it's only natural that, if we do include separate sections, they be kept to a minimum. How many separate sections are you thinking about adding on to the end of the article? You did mention social history and art history, but are we keeping it limited to that? Political, economic, literary, and military history could also be tacked onto the article for the same reason that social and art history are, though personally I wouldn't recommend it. I still don't see why we can't include a topic in multiple time periods where it neatly fits, as we have done with the samurai, for instance. The samurai arose during the Heian period, played a role in warfare during subsequent centuries, became bureaucrats during the Tokugawa period, and then were abolished as a class during the Meiji period. It's fine to split information on the samurai into multiple periods, as long as it fits decently, as it also does in the case of the burakumin. Ultimately, I do think it's a good idea to stick to the same model used by all the other Wikipedia history articles and not include too much information in separate, non-chronological sections of social/economic/political history tacked onto the article. If we include such sections, we should at least keep it very limited. Are social and art history the only separate sections you are proposing right now, or are you planning on going beyond that into economic, military, and political realms as well?CurtisNaito (talk) 05:30, 7 November 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── (a) I'm "thinking about" doing the research, writing the content (in subpages while under development if necessary), and using our heads to decide how best to present the material in a comprehensible way to the readers. Those subjects that only get lost and confusing in the main narrative (because they are not part of the main narrative and don't fit neatly into the period divisions) should be separated out. (b) I'd like you to consider what you mean by "neatly fits". Consider, for example, how what I've written on women's issues here would "neatly fit", and why cramming it into the main narrative would benefit the reader.
Your example of the samurai of course does neatly fit into the main chronology—mainly because the rise and fall of the bakufu is what has shaped the main narrative itself. I have no idea why you think the same applies to the burakumin. How have they shaped the main narrative? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:56, 7 November 2015 (UTC)

The opinions of the three of us are clear. CurtisNaito obviously isn't going to convince me or Curly Turkey that including thematic sections covering non-political topics all together is a bad idea, and we are probably not going to convince CurtisNaito of the opposite. 2-1 is not a consensus either way, so we need some outside input. RFC, anyone? I should note that opening an RFC unilaterally is a disaster, as we all need to work together to produce an RFC question that we all consider to be neutrally-worded -- so I'm not going to do it myself without yer consent, and you should not attempt to do so either. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:59, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't think an RfC would be appropriate, for two reasons: (a) CurtisNaito hasn't answered my questions yet (b) the problematic content hasn't been developed yet, so it would be difficult to demonstrate the problem to driveby editors not familiar with the topic.
I'd like CurtisNaito to take a peak at Tsutsui, whose approach gave me the idea: just over 300 pages on chronological history followed by just under 200 on all those issues that don't fit neatly into the chronological history. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 19:01, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
So far you only mentioned social history and art history as being potential separate topics, so I'm interested in knowing, once you've finished your research, if that's it or if you're in favor of more. Other separate themes could include economic/political/literary/military history, though I'm aware that you don't yet know whether or not you want to include any of those. I would personally favor no separate thematic topics, because this approach is adopted by very few history books and is also not adopted by any Wikipedia articles on the history of a nation or region. However, if we do adopt a unique approach for the purposes of this article, I at least advocate we keep the separate sections relatively short and maintain the focus on the chronological outline. There are no events that necessarily have to be in separate thematic topics. Burakumin, for instance, fits very neatly and sensibly in the chronological outline. However, if other users agree that a certain subject truly can't be fit into the chronological outline, then we can make an exception for it. Tsutsui includes eleven separate thematic topics on women's history, gender, class, Japan's status in Asia, regional and local history, environment, popular culture, agriculture, business and labor, volunteer organizations, and nationalism. Tsutsui's separate themes do include social history, but they don't include art history, or for that matter political, military, or literary history. I would ask you if you also planned on using the same separate themes used by Tsutsui, but I'm aware that you're still researching it.CurtisNaito (talk) 19:16, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't know why you keep bringing up military and political history, which I've never suggested separating out. Nor do I understand why you think burakumin history fits neatly into the main narrative. You still haven't addressed how the stuff I've so far written on women could fit in to the main narrative. Please address it. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 19:34, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
Political and military history are examples of potential separate themes. You said, "What about separating out certain aspects of history into different sections (governement, social organization, arts, economy ...)?" The burakumin were expressly outside the class structure established by the Tokugawa shogunate, they were abolished as a separate class due to the reforms of the Meiji period, and their postwar activism grew in tandem with other social movements on the postwar period. It does fit very neatly into the main narrative. Women's history doesn't fit as neatly, but that doesn't mean it needs to be separated into a different topic. I added a lot of information to the article on women's history in accordance with the time period during which it took place. For instance, women entered the workforce in the postwar era due to the declining birth rates which characterized the period and the economic trends and rise of consumerism for which the period is also noted. Even in women's history there are plenty of developments which fit other economic and political trends of each period.CurtisNaito (talk) 19:46, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
To give you an example of what I mean, the article History of the United States includes no separate, thematic section on women's history, but does have subheadings, in the appropriate chronological periods, dealing with "Women's suffrage" and "The Women's Movement".CurtisNaito (talk) 19:51, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, there are a lot of issues with that article, aren't there?: it's 99kb for a country with a recorded history a third as long as Japan's, and the "Women's Movement" subsection, which covers only the last fifty years, is far longer than the look at women's issues I'm proposing. It should be a birdseye view including only the most pertinent details. You have access to Tsutsui, right? Look at how much information I compressed into those two sentences. Do you think I'm missing anything that should be mentioned at this scope? that's the kind of thing I'm suggesting doing: maybe two-to-three paragraphs on women's issues, no more than at paragraph (at most) on burakumin, a sentence or two on slavery and its abolishment, perhaps a summing up of the everchanging relations between Shinto and Buddhism, etc. I'm not going to make any length predictions, but I don't expect such a section (or sections?) would take up as much of the article as the closing section of Tsutsui. And if it did, so what? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:21, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
One brief, separate section on social history might be okay. I personally don't think it's necessary, partly because it's out of step with all the other Wikipedia articles on national history, but you can go ahead and add the section so that I can see how it looks in the article. However, you indicated earlier that you were also considering separate sections on "governement, social organization, arts, economy". You also mentioned Tsutsui's edited volume, which includes no separate sections on arts or government, but rather separate sections on topics like local history, environment, popular culture, agriculture, and nationalism. It's hard for me to give a comprehensive opinion because I still don't know whether you will ultimately favor adding in separate sections for all those aforementioned subjects, or whether you will ultimately opt only for a separate section on social history. My point is that it's more convenient to the reader and better suited to Wikipedia norms to use an organization based on chronological periods, not separate thematic subjects. The more separate themes the article includes the more it will deviate from the sort of article which is normal for Wikipedia. However, right now social history is the only separate topic which has been put forward in a very concrete way, and if that turn out to be it, I suppose the change wouldn't be all that bad. If we go further in the direction of including more than one separate thematic section, then I actually think we might be better off creating a separate article for them called Themes in Japanese history, so that this article can maintain the same convenient chronological pattern which is used in all the other Wikipedia articles on national history. So to reiterate, if other users insist that a brief, separate section on social history is necessary then we could try that, but I can't tell you how strongly opposed I am to the changes until I know whether it will stop with social history, or whether a dozen or a half dozen other thematic subjects will also be included.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:37, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
I suggested separating out those things that don't fit into the main chronology, and gave examples. Social developments in general are things that tend to cross period lines; cramming them into periods only disrupts the main narrative while preventing the reader from seeing them in their appropriate context. An example is the burakumin, who did not suddenly appear during the Edo period (their origins are lost in the sands of time) and did not play a significant role in shaping the main political narrative. What will be appropriate will depend entirely on what we find in the sources and how well they fit in to the main narrative. How about we do the research first and find out what's appropriate, then, instead of throwing on arbitrary (and possibly untenable) limits? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:01, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, I await the results of your research. My own research did not indicate that we needed separate sections for any specific subjects, because very few scholarly books and no Wikipedia history articles use this format. Incidentally, a couple of the general survey histories which I consulted initially introduced the burakumin class during their sections on the Muromachi period, so I inserted some relevant information in that period. Because the overwhelming majority of general purpose Japanese history books split their information on women's history and burakumin history into the relevant chronological periods, I figure Wikipedia can do the same. Still, I'll await the results of your own research on the matter before giving a final opinion.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:11, 8 November 2015 (UTC)
Well it's apparent that CurtisNaito isn't going to change his mind, but I'm also in favor of a separate section. @CurtisNaito: you mentioned how History of France and History of the United States don't have special sections, but you failed to mention that neither of them have even GA status, and that they're just massive. We also don't need an entirely separate article for something worth only a few paragraphs. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 14:51, 9 November 2015 (UTC)
That's because I already repeatedly referred earlier in the discussion to what good and featured articles were available. As I said, good and featured articles like History of Gibraltar, History of Singapore, and History of Minnesota predominantly use the same chronological format which all the other articles do. You yourself said that you don't want to "overhaul the article". Although "a separate section" might not constitute that, proposals also existed for a lot more separate sections than just one, and adding enough of them would eventually constitute an overhaul which would make the article deviate greatly from the format used in all other Wikipedia national/regional history articles. It depends on whether the separate section really will be "only a few paragraphs" or whether it will extend beyond that.CurtisNaito (talk) 18:01, 9 November 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Okay Curtis, just answer these: How do you propose we deal with the huge mess of stuff crammed willy-nilly into the article at the moment, and the similar stuff that still needs inclusion, without giving them their own sections? And if you are such a stickler for "chronological style", how do you justify the blatantly anti-chronological style already in use in the article (primarily thanks to you) with, for instance, Shunzei and Saigyo discussed in the same section ("Kamakura period"!) as the Zen priests of a later age? Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:19, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
And please don't reply (again) that there is no problem with the current format: if that were the case everybody else wouldn't be in agreement that there is. I know you, TH1980, Calvin999 and AlbinoFerret like to throw about words like "harassment", "battleground mentality" and "assuming bad faith", but if I really were just making up things to complain about in order to undermine you, everyone else wouldn't agree with me nine times out of ten. (We don't agree on a whole lot else...) Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:37, 13 November 2015 (UTC)

Shunzei and Tekia are not actually out of chronological order because the only dates referred to in the article about Shunzei are 1183 and 1188. The majority of that range falls within the Kamakura period and certainly can be appropriately discussed alongside other cultural events in and around the period, so the general chronological format holds up. However, it seems like you're proposing a separate section on literature. Though you could try to implement that if necessary, it's still unclear whether it's worth a whole section. Sturmgewehr88 only wanted one separate section a few paragraphs in length dealing with social history. CurlyTurkey mainly only wanted one separate section on social history, with the possibility of adding art history depending on the results of his research. A literature section has not yet been concretely proposed. As I said, if we only require one separate section on social events, we could still generally keep the same chronological format as all the other Wikipedia history articles. However, if we end up adding in a great number of separate sections, then my proposal would be to create a separate article possibly called Themes in Japanese history dealing with thematic topics so that this article can retain the standard chronological format.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:44, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
If you think placing Fujiwara no Shunzei in the latter half of the section on the Kamakura period, two paragraphs below a discussion of the Yuan invasions, is chronologically accurate, then ... I don't think I can help you, but you seriously need someone to mentor you in correct reading of sources, and maybe even basic math. I am proposing separate sections on cultural and social history; "art" and "literature" (and religion should it come to that) are all "culture".
And by the way, it's "Teika", not "Tekia"; normally I wouldn't correct you on what appears to be a simple misprint, but you have been taking a somewhat condescending attitude to virtually everyone I say belongs in this article throughout this dispute, and have misspelled their names far more than you normally misspell plain English words (both on this talk page and in the in the article itself), so it doesn't look like accidental misprints so much as not even trying to get these figures' names right. The fact that my question mentioned Saigyo and you changed it to Teika is yet another problem, and seems to be a deliberate attempt on your part to dodge the question and make strawman arguments against me, as Teika (unlike Saigyo) actually did flourish during the early Kamakura period. But let's not talk about literature then -- how about the fact that the cultural developments of the early Edo period are all crammed in to the last eight lines of the section? The section on the Heian period takes the exact opposite approach -- cultural developments of the eleventh century are discussed at the very start of the section. Seriously, read the article text as it is now, and imagine you are a casual reader with no prior knowledge of what outside sources say about Japanese history: A major architectural achievement, apart from Heian-kyō itself, was the temple of Byōdō-in built in 1053 in Uji. Political power within the court soon passed to the Fujiwara clan, a family of court nobles who had been close to the imperial family for centuries. In 858 Fujiwara no Yoshifusa had himself declared sesshō ("regent") to the underage emperor. This is only "chronological" in the most abstract sense of the word; we already have sections on cultural and social history, but they are not clearly demarcated as such, and are inconsistently placed at either the beginning or end of each of the arbitrary "period" sections.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 15:22, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
The point is to maintain a general chronological order, based on periods, which is not really much of a feat since every single other Wikipedia article on national history manages to do it. Thematic topics that took place in and around a certain period can be discussed in that period. It's a convenient method of organization that allows the readers to understand the overall flows of events as they unfolded. That's why all the other articles use it. I don't see what's wrong with including literary developments which happened to occur in the Kamakura period within that section, and I also don't see why exactly cultural events all have to be discussed at either the beginning or end section of each period. However, if that's what you prefer then it's just a matter of creating a subheading, entitled "cultural developments" or something like that, at the bottom of the sections on the Heian and Edo periods. Doing this makes sense. I don't think Wikipedia has much precedent for creating whole separate sections for literary or social events at the bottom of an article on national history, but there is lots of precedent for thematic subheadings within chronological periods.[2][3][4][5]CurtisNaito (talk) 15:47, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
literary developments which happened to occur in the Kamakura period Curtis, you should refrain from editing this article and every other article on Japanese history if you think this kind of comment is remotely appropriate. The developments you are talking about primarily took place in the Heian period, or maybe the very, very earliest part of the Kamakura period, but you have them discussed at the end of our section on the Kamakura period. Hijiri 88 (やや) 00:43, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't see what is inappropriate about the comment. The developments regarding Shunzei and Teika which I referred to did largely take place in the Kamakura period. The material on Saigyo was not added to the article by me, though if you think it would be better suited to the Heian period then we can just move it there. As I pointed out, all the other articles use that format so we can work out something similar. If you prefer a subheading, we'll just insert the appropriate subheadings at the end of each period.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:11, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
It makes sense in most cases, but not in the cases I've brought up. You have yet to tell us how you would handle, say, women's issues chronologically (though I keep asking you), and your assertion that burakumin can be done so is downright bizarre. Who cares about "Wikipedia precedent"? If it doesn't work here then we ignore precedent. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:44, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
One section on social history might not be a dramatic change from precedent, but it ought to be limited. We still have to ask ourselves the question of why there is not one single English Wikipedia article on national history which includes a variety of special thematic topics at the end. Japanese history is surely not so thoroughly unique that it cannot be covered the same way that any other nation's history is. I added a considerable amount of women's history into the article in response to your suggestion, and if you noticed what I added, I think it fit fairly well into the chronological pattern. Personally, I thought the details on the burakumin fit in nicely as well. Most of the Japanese history books I read, including Totman and Perez etc.., split information on the burakumin into separate chronological sections and I figured that if it's good enough for historians it's good enough for us. If absolutely necessary, we can later move these things down to a separate section on social history, but if we can't keep the separate thematic sections limited to one or two, I strongly suggest creating a separate article which organizes things based on theme, rather than re-writing this article in a manner which is distinct both from every other Wikipedia article and from almost all general history books written about Japanese history.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:53, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
No, we don't need to ask ourselves that question—have you not noticed that not a single "History of <country>" has made it to FA? (the exceptions are the subarticles History of Lithuania (1219–95) and History of Poland (1945–89)). We need to ask how best to present the information to readers so that it's comprehensible, digestible, and in proper context. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:02, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, I think it's a question worth asking because we ought to know what people as a whole find to be "comprehensible" and "digestible", not just what a small number of currently active editors find to be comprehensible and digestible. Since all the other Wikipedia articles on national history are written in a largely chronological format, I think we can assume that most readers must like this format for national history. This chronological format is used in both of the two featured articles you cited above, as well as good rated articles like History of Singapore. Most published overviews of Japanese history also used the chronological format, so presumably readers of books also favor this style. Tsutsui is an exception, but even Tsutsui does not deem artistic, literary, and cultural history to be worthy of separate thematic discussion. However, I am aware that for the time being only a separate section on social history is being concretely proposed for the purposes of this article, and Tsutsui is one of the few overview histories that does include social history separately. Basically, it's worth considering what most people find to be comprehensible, not just what we personally find to be comprehensible. That's the issue I'm thinking about.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:13, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
it's worth considering what most people find to be comprehensible, not just what we personally find to be comprehensible: that's what I've been saying all along. Slapping in everything chronologically with no regard for the reader is conveient to the editors, but does not necessarily benefit the reader. I don't see how crobarring the history of the burakumin into the chronology benefits the reader—it disrupts the main narrative and fractures the burakumin narrative in a way that makes it difficult for the reader to follow. CurtisNaito, I suggested spinning out these social issues to solve a concrete problem: that the chronological format was a terrible solution to presenting several aspects of the article's content. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:45, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
It's inevitable that the narrative will be fractured. The very nature of organizing an article requires some fracturing. I still don't really understand why only this Wikipedia article can't manage to split information about the burakumin up, whereas the large majority of the books cited in this Wikipedia article somehow manage to do it just fine. Naturally, I don't want to reorganize the whole article in a manner so widely unorthodox and inconvenient to readers, and we couldn't undertake such dramatic action without a request for comment. However, right now only a separate section on social history had been proposed, and if that's it, then I guess we can go ahead and add it, but let's leave it at social history and not go beyond that, otherwise we risk making the article more convoluted. I'm aware that you're still researching this topic, so I hope you will report your findings once you have completed your research.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:55, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
You still haven't explained the complete lack of chronological order in placing the building of the Byodo-in before the dawn of the Fujiwara regency. Please address this. Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:37, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
It's like I told you before, I modeled the article off all the other Wikipedia articles on national history. I didn't see any reason to view Japanese history through a unique prism, so I used the same format as the books I read and all the other articles on Wikipedia. Therefore, I organized the article based on chronological periods, but within each period I included paragraphs, or in some cases subheadings, on various themes. The reason why I discussed Byodo-in there is because the theme of the first two paragraphs was culture/art. It's easy to understand my reasoning if you look at any other Wikipedia article on national history. For instance, check the article History of Germany. It includes one chronological section from 1815-1867, but within that section it includes a few paragraphs dealing with "science and culture", and those scientific and cultural developments span the entire 1815-1867 period. These two paragraphs of the Heian period deal with the cultural developments that spanned the entire period. This is the same way that most of the history books cited in this article are organized. If you prefer, a simple solution would be to just move all the cultural developments to the bottom of the Heian period section under a "cultural developments" subheading.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:53, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, please stop taking credit for other people's work: the formatting we are talking about was not introduced by you based on either external sources or other Wikipedia articles; it was already in place years before you first edited the article. You just made the problem worse by arbitrarily "trimming" huge chunks of the article and making the massive time jumps all over the article stand out more. And while we are at it, please learn to write grammatical English: use of WP:SLANG like "I modelled the article off all the other Wikipedia articles" is perfectly acceptable on talk pages, but you have a habit of including phrases like "modelled off" and "based off" in this and other articles (another problem Calvin999 failed to address).
Anyway, I'm not averse to including a clearly delineated "cultural and social developments in X period" subsection at the end of each period section, as I think I specified above before being distracted.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 03:19, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I never took credit for anyone's work. You asked me about Byodo-in, and I was the one who put mention of it into the article text. There was a photo before, but no mention within the text of the article. I did base the format of the article off other Wikipedia articles and external sources. If you consult other Wikipedia articles as well as the sources used in the article like Perez, you can see my motivation for most of the form of the article. I will, however, add a new subheading to the Heian period, which was something I suggested a long time ago.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:30, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Your method of discussion is obscure (second in my experience only to the notorious Enkyo2). When you said you "modelled it off" other Wikipedia articles and reliable sources, it seemed inconceivable that you could be talking about the construction of Byodo-in, and looked a lot more like you were talking about the general layout of the article, which you did not create and should not take credit for.
But what I am taking from your most recent backtrack is that you claim you added reference to the construction of Byodo-in (and I suppose the writing of the Pillow Book and Genji?) at the start of our coverage of the Heian period because this is how your source did it? Can you confirm that that is what you mean? Why did you mention other Wikipedia articles?
Further, you most certainly have taken credit for others' work.[6] And just above here you made an outrageous and completely baseless accusation (that I am in some way "banned" for "harassment") that would likely see you blocked if you made it in a user conduct forum like ANI, and is all the worse that it was made on an article talk page. Please retract this insinuation, and explain your very obscure and apparently contradictory statements.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:23, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Your link just shows what I put into the article. I didn't take credit for others' work. You were once banned for harassing me, but that's not relevant right now. I mentioned other Wikipedia articles because I based the format of this article on my examination of other books and Wikipedia articles. Part of the reason why I put culture first was because many of the books I consulted also did. I don't really think it matters whether the culture section is at the beginning or end but, for instance, Henshall mentioned cultural developments right at the very start of the Heian period.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:28, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
The diff clearly shows you referring to material I added to the article as "[your] wording" ("your" is not a direct quote - you said "my"). Further, your couching your accusations in inaccurate lingo is noted: the "ban" you are referring to was a week-long block, and it was not for "harassment" but a single personal attack. The fact that the personal attack in question was actually a peace offering that you chose to interpret as an attack, and a gullible sysop took your word for it also probably needs to be pointed out. The fact that the gullible admin in question was desysoped on their own request as part of a POINTy, wikidiva-ish and seemingly insincere "retirement" roughly 72 hours after blocking me might also be worth noting. But of course none of this has anything to do with article content, so I have no idea why you keep fixating on it. I'll check Henshall when I get home, but I can guess he probably gave a one-paragraph "hook" at the start of the relevant chapter, and didn't include any significant discussion of cultural developments later on. Hijiri 88 (やや) 05:29, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
No, in that diff I was referring to the wording I had used to describe it. Again, you're focusing too much on inaccurate accusations concerning past issues and not enough on current article content. I already moved the Heian culture information to the end of the section, though you can see for yourself that Henshall introduced cultural events, including the culture of the Heian court and the Tale of Genji, right on the first page of his section on the period. I did already add in the necessary subheadings to the article, so that issue is dealt with.CurtisNaito (talk) 05:53, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Curtis, any idiot can see that in the above diff you are very clearly chunk of text I researched, composed and added to the article as your "wording".

Anyway, your subheadings are inconsistent and not ideal (why are religious developments of the Kamakura periodincluded in the main section but in the Heian period lumped together with literary developments?), and were made completely without consensus despite it obviously being a controversial edit. You really, really need to stop treating this article like your personal project and treating other users like "guests" who are not allowed make edits of which you disapprove.

Taking that link off your userpage, and actually listening to the views of others, might also help dispel the impression that you are OWNing this page.

And you still haven't apologized for or retracted your obviously false accusation that I was "banned" for "harassment"... why not?

Hijiri 88 (やや) 07:20, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

Well, I can't retract any of my previous comments, because what I said was entirely true. Concerning the subheadings, I didn't think they needed to be consistent. You wanted subheadings, so I very sensibly inserted subheadings based on the kind of material which was written in each section. For the Heian period, I separated culture into a different section, though the section in question doesn't include much about religion. For the Kamakura period, there was far more than enough on literature alone to justify its own section.CurtisNaito (talk) 07:27, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
What you said most certainly was not "entirely true". I have only ever been subject to two bans, one of which was self-imposed and brief, the other of which (without going into detail) has nothing to do with "harassment". And the block to which you refer also had nothing to do with harassment. And the material you rather clumsily moved into subsections was arbitrary (Buddhism is lumped with poetry and fiction in the Heian period, but not the Kamakura period). Why can you not see this? I won't revert you because, unlike you, I am interested in finding consensus for whatever major change is to be made before I make it. Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:07, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I did explain what I meant above, and it was true. Concerning the subheadings, I put all the cultural events of the Heian period into one section, which turned out to be only two paragraphs long, though Buddhism as a religion is not included in that section at this point in time. The Heian period section does not yet include any information on Buddhism. Literature of the general Kamakura period ought to have a section to itself, unless you plan on trimming the coverage of literature later. Four paragraphs all dealing exclusively with literature is more than enough for an entire subheading.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:15, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
So what you're saying is I should write another four paragraphs on the far greater literary achievements of the Heian period? Also, how do you justify tieing the four paragraphs in question specifically to the Kamakura period when the rise of the gunki monogatari began, and much of the poetry was composed, in the mid-to-late Heian period? Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:57, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
All you told me to do was to create subheadings, not change the text itself. The Heian period only had two relatively short paragraphs on culture, so I took what was available and created a section on culture. The Kamakura period had four paragraphs on literature which was more than enough for a subheading. Those four paragraphs were mostly inserted into the Kamakura period by you, not me. Basically, I think a subheading should have at least one long paragraph, or preferably at least two paragraphs. Four paragraphs is more than enough for an entire subheading, so for the Kamakura period I didn't need to put any more material than literature into the subheading. Gunki monogatari has been in the Kamakura period a while now, and I already explained to you why, quoting the cited sources at length. If you want you could move it to the Heian period, though you were the one who wrote into the article, and I quote, "The Kamakura period also saw the birth of of th "war tale" gunki monogatari genre."CurtisNaito (talk) 09:08, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Please don't quote me out of context: "birth" was a poor choice of words, but still technically accurate if we stick within the arbitrary distinction of wakan-kongou-]bun gunki monogatari ("war tales" in Keene) and the earlier kanbun senki monogatari ("battle tales" in Keene) like 将門記 and 陸奥話記, which were Heian works. Hijiri 88 (やや) 10:30, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Also, please read WP:NOTSOURCE: even if my Wikipedia edits said what you wanted them to, they still wouldn't justify your clumsy edits, and you should be basing your edits on external reliable sources. Hijiri 88 (やや) 10:39, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I added the subheadings where appropriate, but that material in question was put within the Kamakura period by you, not me. Without changing the substance of the text of the article, the subheadings were accurately named.CurtisNaito (talk) 10:48, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
No, you were the one who put that material where it is in the article. Remember "Zen monks like Shunzei and Teika revitalized the waka genre" and "The Tale of the Heike was an outgrowth of the setsuwa genre"? You put all of that at the end of our Kamakura section. All I did was correct the ridiculous and outrageous OR you added; I was just too busy to rearrange it all in chronological order. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:36, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Most of the material was added by you to the Kamakura period. For instance, I never inserted material on Saigyo into the article. You could have mentioned him in the Heian period, but you chose to insert reference to him into the Kamakura period instead. As I noted, it was similarly you who insisted that gunki monogatari originated in the Kamakura period. I never added any OR, but concerning chronological placement, you're criticizing yourself far more than me. In the case of the Kamakura period, all I did was put in the appropriate subheading.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:46, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
There is not now, nor has there ever been significant coverage of waka in our section on the Heian period; adding the words "and the itinerant priest Saigyo" to a section that already described Shunzei, Teika and (by implication) the SKS was much more natural than having a reference to him jump out of nowhere in the Heian section. At least I added the chronological clarification "late Heian and early Kamakura"; your version left the reader to assume that all this happened after the Mongol invasions!
it was similarly you who insisted that gunki monogatari originated in the Kamakura period Yes, because you claimed your source said they originated in the Muromachi period!
I never added any OR You added the claim that Shunzei and his son were Zen monks of the late thirteenth century. This claim did not appear in your source. Hence, OR.
But this finger-pointing is pointless: regardless of whose "fault" it is, the article is the way it is now, jumpy, bizarre chronology and all: how do you propose we fix it? I would tell you my ideas, but I already have and you filibustered them.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:00, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I never said nor implied that Shunzei and his son were Zen monks. I still don't know why you came to that conclusion. However, my proposal is that we leave it the way it is. Almost all the dates referred to in that section are Kamakura period dates, so chronologically and thematically, it all fits reasonably well. If you prefer Saigyo in the Heian period, then we can move him there, but in general what we have is fine.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:05, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Curtis, get over yourself. You keep telling me I'm the one responsible for the non-chronological portions of the text, but most (probably 90%) of them were there when you first nominated the article. Leaving the article "as is" means pretending events are narrated in strictly chronological order when they aren't. How are we going to fix this? Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:12, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

Well, you were the one who added in most of the allegedly non-chronological material here, but to me it's fine as long as it fits with the general pattern used in Wikipedia articles on national history. As I said above, "check the article History of Germany. It includes one chronological section from 1815-1867, but within that section it includes a few paragraphs dealing with 'science and culture', and those scientific and cultural developments span the entire 1815-1867 period." In other words, we can include a broad range of literary developments taking place during the Kamakura period in the relevant subheading under that section. If we need to move out one or more of the figures who were truly entirely outside the period in question, like possibly Saigyo or Shotetsu, we can do that, but the majority can stay where it is and still fit perfectly into a chronological organization based on periods.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:23, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
you were the one who added in most of the allegedly non-chronological material here No, I wasn't. That is baseless accusation, and is clearly being made in bad-faith. Virtually every section of the article jumps back and forth somewhere in its coverage, and I've barely touched anything before the Nara period or after the Kamakura period. Show me even one non-chronological element outside of the 12/13C for which I was responsible (before my most recent edit, which clearly doesn't count, and also fixes any other problems for which I was debatably responsible). Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:50, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Also, saying "it's your fault!" is pretty meaningless when I'm not the one arguing for pretending this article is in chronological order. Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:54, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Most of the things directly above which you were specifically criticizing as being non-chronological were topics you yourself added, but the main point I've been making is that most national history articles on Wikipedia, not to mention other encyclopedias, follow chronological order based on periods. Within the periods thematic subheadings do exist which cover trends that spanned the period. When I said chronological, what I meant was the same chronological format used in the other Wikipedia articles, encyclopedia articles, and cited history books. In that regard, this article is already in good chronological order.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:03, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I wasn't "specifically criticizing" anything. They were examples of a problem that is endemic throughout the article, and with one extremely dubious exception (Saigyo) all of my examples were placed where they are by you. But that is beside the point! How do you propose we fix this endemic problem? the same chronological format used in the other Wikipedia articles Name one GA-level article that is divided into section based on broad historical periods up to 400 years in length, with events that occurred at the ends of these periods being described at the beginnings of the sections, and vice versa, without any clarification inline of when exactly these events occurred. (I say "GA-level" because I know there's a lot of bullshit out there on this site: we shouldn't be aspiring towards bullshit.) Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:40, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I think I already fixed all of the chronological issues you brought up, except for the ones which you yourself inserted into the article, which was most of the ones you mentioned recently. Let's go beyond GA quality and look at this featured level article, History of Minnesota. The period "Modern Minnesota" spans a long period from 1935 to present. However, the first section, "Arts and culture" covers events throughout the period up to 2006, as well as briefly mentioning events as early as 1883 to provide basic context. The second section only covers World War II (1939-1945). The third section, "Modern economy", covers economic trends of the whole modern period, trends which don't always need specific dates attached. However, the section also briefly notes events as early as 1902 for context purposes. The fourth section, "The digital state", covers 1946 to present. The fifth section, "Postwar politics", covers political events in the whole modern period, while also referring to events as early as the 1870s to give context.
Do you understand what I mean now? History of Minnesota follows a model based primarily on broad chronological periods, not thematic topics. However, within each chronological period, there are thematic topics which span the entire period, plus a little more to give context. History of Minnesota is a featured level article, Wikipedia's highest standard of quality, so it is a model worth emulating.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:00, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
And how many of the events described in the History of Minnesota article are not explicitly dated inline, leaving the reader to assume that one event took place after the other? And how many are explicitly dated with phrases like "around this time", "then", etc., when the actual events took place 100 years apart? This problem could not be as bad for "Modern Minnesota" (apparently a period of 80 years) as for the Heian period (400 years). Hijiri 88 (やや) 14:28, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't think you have yet asked me even once to insert a date for a specific event I added to the article. If you want dates, tell me which event specifically you want to be dated, and I'll insert the date. Right now this article is modeled off a similar format to the featured level article History of Minnesota. Not every general trend and event in that article is dated either, which is not necessarily a problem within the chronological boundaries set by each section and theme.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:36, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
No one's asking you to insert anything. We are trying to have an adult conversation over exactly what is the best solution to the problem, but no one is in any doubt that the problem is the presence of non-chronological material in a supposedly chronological structure. I have been saying this throughout (explicitly referring to "clarifying inline dates" several times), and if you didn't notice this problem until over 13,000 words of discussion of the problem (more by you than any other single user) had already taken place then we have a much bigger problem that will need to be dealt with elsewhere. The way I see it there are essentially two possible ways we can solve this problem: either drop the pretense of chronology, and discuss material best dealt with by genre (or something else) rather than year in separate sections, or explicitly date everything inline and place everything in a more strictly chronological order. I honestly don't know which is better, so please stop trying to figure out which of these options I am "asking you" to implement. I am trying to discuss this and establish consensus one way or the other. Hijiri 88 (やや) 16:09, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
We might need to devise a third option, because I don't think it's likely either option you suggest will gain consensus. Re-organizing the whole article thematically rather than chronologically is too radical of a change to get consensus. No other article uses that format. Concerning the second option, this article already does follow a good chronological order, the same sort of chronological order used in all the other Wikipedia national/regional history articles. If you actually know of anything which would benefit from adding a date, I'll add it, though you can surely see that the chronological format of this article does not deviate in any significant manner from the chronological pattern used in other Wikipedia history articles, including good and featured ones.CurtisNaito (talk) 17:29, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't think it's "too radical", but I wouldn't make reorganizing it like that a requirement. If someone wanted to create a reorganized version of the article in a sandbox and could demonstrate thereby that it improved the article's readability, I'd be all for that. Unless someone's going to volunteer to do that, though, I'm not going to push for that. I will push for easily implementable solutions, like adding a section on social history (and potentially other subjects), and I'm opposed to slapping this information willy-nilly throughout the article for all the reasons I've already given. WP:OTHERSTUFFEXISTS is a terrible argument, particularly in the face of concrete problems, so let's focus on solving actual problems rather than blaming the neighbours. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 21:36, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Evidently I agree that reorganization is not a necessity to improve content, but remember that Tsutsui was the only history book we found using the thematic format, and even it didn't "drop the pretense of chronology". The first 350 pages of Tsutsui, including all the information on literature and art, are organized through chronological periods. A social history section is the only concrete proposal we have, and while such a section may not be normal for either published history books or Wikipedia articles, at least we do have one overview history book, Tsutsui, which separates out some of the social history. If another user is truly inspired to create more separate themes, I suppose they could try drafting them in their sandbox, but I think most Wikipedia users would agree that Wikipedia is more of a follower than a leader when it comes to information on history. Therefore, it's better to follow existing models, used by most scholars and known to be convenient to most readers, rather than invent our own experimental system.CurtisNaito (talk) 21:55, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
Did you really need to take 1,149 bytes to say that? We follow existing models when they get the job done well. They don't here, so we're looking for solutions. Help us find solutions or get out of the way. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:19, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
If we add a separate section on social history, then all the rest can be handled through convenient subheadings underneath each relevant chronological period. That's the solution.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:24, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
If that's indeed the solution, then great. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:28, 14 November 2015 (UTC)
For the record, I never said we should reorganize the entire article. This is just another case of Curtis putting words in my mouth because he doesn't want to address what I actually said. I was very clear that what I meant was we should take all the material that is clearly difficult to discuss in a strictly chronological order under the current sections, and give them their own separate discussions at the end of the article. These would be, in my opinion, "cultural" and "social" history; CurtisNaito has said many times that he thinks "political" and "military" history might need to be added to this, but this is a non-starter, because the basic chronological structure of the present article is based solely around political and military changes -- those are the ones that don't need to be given their own sections. An example of what is best discussed in its own section instead of being broken down into separate sections like "cultural developments in the Heian period" and "literary developments in the Kamakura period" would be the waka poetry of the late Heian and Kamakura periods, and the war tales of the early Kamakura period that drew influence from earlier Heian works. This problem is no longer the disaster that it was 24 hours ago now that I have added a new section title that clearly notes that these are not late-Kamakura developments, but someone who died in 1190 is still discussed four paragraphs down from an event that took place in 1281. This isn't chronological; it's thematic. Should we increase the amount of thematic coverage and take it out of the (otherwise purely chronological) sections to give them their own discussion at the end of the article? If other users think it is fine as is, then I guess I'm okay with it too, but I'd like to hear from people other than Curly Turkey (who probably opposes it) and CurtisNaito (who clearly doesn't mind). Hijiri 88 (やや) 00:49, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
You said that you wanted to "drop the pretense of chronology", though that is the basis for all the other Wikipedia national history articles. You said that a separate section on the political theme is a non-starter, but the Spanish language version of History of Japan, which is a featured article, includes only one separate thematic section, on politics. All the social and cultural events are incorporated into the chronological periods, and naturally, I don't need to remind you that featured level articles are generally regarded as models to follow for other Wikipedia articles. Since there appears to be consensus for a separate social history section, I'll add it myself, but I think cultural events can be handled in subheadings, just as they are in the Spanish version. As I noted, cultural trends which broadly span an entire period can become subheadings within each relevant period.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:03, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Stop trying to find creative interpretations of everything I say now, and focus on the issues at hand, please! How do you propose we deal with the non-chronological portions of our cultural history where "subheadings" would create awkward and misleading breaks in the narrative between, to name just one example, "late classical" and "early medieval" literature? Hijiri 88 (やや) 02:34, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, as I indicated above, I'm not convinced it really is a problem, because it's not really non-chronological. Just keep the focus in each subheading on the cultural events of that period, and the alleged problem is no more. However, if you really think it's necessary, maybe the best course of action would be for you to take Curly Turkey's advice and draft something in your sandbox. Why not draft a separate section on cultural history in your sandbox so that we can see more concretely what it would look like?CurtisNaito (talk) 02:41, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

Tertiary sources for establishing the scope of this article[edit]

Sime users have been using Henshall and a few other general histories (mostly, it would seem, undergraduate textbooks for use in American and other western universities).

But wouldn't long encyclopedia articles with titles like "Japanese history", "History of Japan", "日本の歴史" or "日本史" be a much better guide for what gets mentioned than our random selections from 200+ page history textbooks? And if we're going for "general knowledge" as it is on the street in Japan, wouldn't elementary and junior high school social studies textbooks be better as well?

I'm not saying these are the sources that should be cited inline (if we're being honest, Henshall probably shouldn't either), but they would provide us with a good, objective and non-partisan outline as to what should be included in the article.

Hijiri88 (やや) 12:45, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

@Curly Turkey: @Sturmgewehr88: @Nishidani: @MSJapan: @Signedzzz: What do you guys think? Hijiri 88 (やや) 03:38, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

The proposal is not very concrete though. You haven't named any specific tertiary sources or mentioned any specific topics from those tertiary sources which should be included. If another user says they agree with the above, what would that agreement actually mean? There's not a lot to agree or disagree with.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:45, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

It's simple: we check Japanese elementary or junior high school syllabi (it doesn't matter how) to see if there is anything else that every Japanese school child is required to know that we have thusfar completely neglected.

I've given several solid examples in the past (Tamuramaro, Yoshitsune, Teika, Masamune...), but they have all already been addressed.

The problem is that if we know that at GA review the article was deficient in the areas I have already addressed (almost all associated with the ancient and late classical periods), then we can only assume the same problem remains in those areas/periods of history of which I am not so knowledgeable. That's where the elementary and/or junior high school textbooks come in. (The problem with anything above junior high school is that it is by nature more specialized and less useful for our purposes.)

Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:37, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

Well okay, you can try that out, but I personally don't understand why Japanese high school textbooks are so much better as reference sources than the World Book Encyclopedia, Encyclopedia Britannica, and overview history books which have already been consulted in a thorough manner. I don't think that topics which aren't included in those sources, like Tamuramaro, Teika, Masamune, would necessarily be mandatory additions just because a high school textbook mentions them.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:51, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
The textbooks wouldn't be "better", but they definitely give a different perspective. They go much more into pre-Modern Japan, in my experience. People always seem surprised to learn that I know who Shōtoku Taishi is, though that's a name a high school student wouldn't get away with not knowing. I think it would be interesting to look through a few (no surprise, but there are a lot of Japanese history books in Japan), but they shouldn't get automatic preference. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:29, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
@Hijiri88 and CurtisNaito: He already explained why we should use textbooks as a complement to the other sources we have, he never said we're throwing the other ones out. And Hijiri, just make sure whatever textbooks we use aren't whitewashed. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 05:31, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, there's only the one that's truly "whitewashed", but it's had a chilling effect on others, which might minimize certain events without actually burying them. I grabbed a discarded history book out of curiosity recently (high school, not sure what grade) that mentions the 南京事件 and 731部隊, but not 慰安婦 that I can tell. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:37, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Just to be clear, the reason I am proposing this is because I think this article is tilted too much toward modern history. We know it definitely had deficiencies in its coverage of pre-modern history back in August, and I suspect it probably still does. So Curly Turkey's concern is actually, if anything, a point in my proposal's favour (I'm not suggesting we remove modern history that isn't covered in the textbooks). Sturmgewehr88's whitewashing concern isn't really an issue either, because my proposal is to add material that is covered in textbooks, not remove material that isn't, and also because the whitewashing controversy is mostly centered around the occupation of Korea, the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Greater East Asia War, all twentieth-century problems. Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:03, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
I think I said this before, but I think the problem is not so much that there's too much modern Japan, as too little pre-modern (although I've removed a bunch of RECENTISM, like "Cool Japan", etc). Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 22:36, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
You are right, of course. Hence why I propose expanding the pre-modern sections, not cutting down on the modern history sections. Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:29, 17 November 2015 (UTC)

The archive size[edit]

Why are the archives so short? With all these discussions, you would think the archives would have more bytes. Vivexdino (talk) 06:35, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

@Vivexdino: Most of these discussions started in August. I don't know of any major disputes occuring on this page before then. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 18:30, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

Mentioning of Monarchs[edit]

The death of Showa and the ascension of Akihito isnt mentioned in the text at all!? Oversight or anti-monarchical bias? The death of an emperor (and the end of an era) and the ascension of a new emperor (and the beginning of a new era) is a rather important fact that should be explicitly mentioned and not passed over, at least in my opinion. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:18, 16 November 2015 (UTC)

Yes, you got us. We hate the emperor and all his toys. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 23:13, 16 November 2015 (UTC)
@User:Curly Turkey I do think that if we are going to include section titles named after the imperial eras, we should probably mention that they are named after imperial eras, so there is some merit to the IP's suggestion. Obviously the IP is assuming bad faith, and it even looks like trolling given that CurtisNaito and his amazing friends apparently believe I cast the same aspersions of "bias against the emperor" on Talk:Emperor Jimmu last year. But on the substance he/she may well be right... Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:25, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
That's something I keep meaning to bring up, but keep forgetting: the Spansih FA has a section on the emperors, and I think a short section like that would be a good idea, especially if it explained briefly how the nengō work. Side comment: I was shocked the other day when my wife told my kids that the nengō before Meiji were based on the reigns of the shoguns. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:36, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
That sounds like a good idea -- go for it.
Thinking about it a bit more, almost all of the other period names are "explained" insofar as we have a section titled "Kamakura period" where we mention that the shogunate in Kamakura held power, and so on, but we don't seem to explicitly state such except in the (obviously less intuitive) Jomon and Yayoi periods. The GA reviewer, along with several other outside commenters like Prhartcom and Dr. Blofeld, don't seem to be specialists in Japanese history, so I'm wondering how they felt about this. Were they able to find out what these terms referred to by clicking the wikilinks?
Your solution, though, is obviously better than asking our readers to click the links. How about ending the nengō discussion with something like Since 1868, each era has corresponded directly to the reign of each successive emperor. There have been four such eras: Meiji (1868-1912), Taishō (1912-1926), Shōwa (1926-1989) and Heisei (1989-present).
Regarding what your wife said: no comment. ;-)
Hijiri 88 (やや) 09:26, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't see why a separate section mentioning nengo is necessary when the article is organized by nengo only for the final four periods. Of those four periods, the first two are already evidently named after emperors. We can deal with the concerns of the IP user simply by adding a one sentence explanation at the start of the Showa and Heisei periods.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:15, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
Read the proposal again: the "separate section"subsection of the "political history" section you were aggressively correcting me on not long ago would be on the emperors -- a presence in Japan since the dawn of recorded history, though with a shifting role and importance. Additionally, you are just plain wrong when you say "the first two are named after emperors". You should not be editing this or any other article on Japanese history if you haven't grasped the basic fact that the emperors are named after their eras, not the other way around. If the self-proclaimed principal author of this article can misunderstand something so basic as this, then obviously we should assume our readers will come away with the same misunderstanding, and this will need to be corrected; otherwise, we are knowingly feeding our readers false information. adding a one sentence explanation at the start of the Showa Umm... such a sentence is already in the article at the start of the Showa section. It just doesn't directly state that the "Shōwa period" refers to the reign of the emperor whose dates are given in that sentence. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:42, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
We refer to them in the article as Emperor Meiji and Emperor Taisho, so it's clear who those two periods are named after. Potential problems exist only for Showa and Heisei. The emperors have not historically been Japan's most important political institution, so giving the emperors in particular a unique section in this article seems unnecessary.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:51, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
it's clear who those two periods are named after Curtis, you can't be serious. I corrected you on this point immediately above and either (1) you completely ignored me or (2) you doubled-down to avoid admitting you were wrong on this very basic point. The emperors have not historically been Japan's most important political institution And as a religious/cultural/symbolic institution? Their dynasty has been around a lot longer than any of the other families that have wielded more political power than they have over the last 800 years or so. Would you rather we created a separate section on "cloistered emperors" since they historically wielded more political power? Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:02, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
No, the point I was making was that it's easy for the reader to see that the Meiji and Taisho periods have those names because the Emperors themselves are called Emperor Meiji and Emperor Taisho. Those are names applied to them in Japanese and English. The difficulty lies with Hirohito and Akihito because in the article the reign names are not included within their own names. You yourself said that you did not want any separate section on political history. If the new section proposed above isn't going to include any political institutions other than the imperial institution, then it won't be very long, but why isn't it sufficient to cover the Emperors within chronological periods whenever they happen to be relevant? Cloistered emperors, for instance, were more relevant than other emperors, but they are already covered in the Heian period section. Though the Spanish language version of this article does have a separate section for political history in general, including the Emperors, most Wikipedia history articles on countries do not have such sections. History of the United Kingdom, for instance, does not have a separate section on political history or the monarchy.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:17, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, it doesn't matter what you meant, because when you say things like REPLACE it makes me doubt your competence to continue editing this article or even express opinions on this proposal. Making mistakes is fine -- I've made my fair share of them on this project -- but when a person corrected flat-out, and they still continue to dig deeper, essentially claiming that they were not wrong, it is extremely difficult to work with that person. Popular American films like The Last Samurai may have told you that "Emperor Meiji" was "his name" and the era was named for him, but this claim has no basis in actual history; no one called him that during his lifetime, because that was not his name. Why are you not understanding this? Hijiri 88 (やや) 23:04, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't understand what you mean, but I wasn't wrong. Rather than twisting my words, we should focus only on issues relating to article content. I was saying that it is easy for the reader to understand why the Meiji and Taisho periods are named as such, in accordance with the common English names of the monarchs being Meiji and Taisho. The content-based issue relates to whether or not we should include a separate section discussing the Emperors. I am in favor of adding a brief explanation of the terms Showa and Heisei into the article, but what I want to know is why that should be in a separate section. Why not at the start of the Showa and Heisei periods? If the separate section on emperors is only going to include an explanation of nengo, then I don't see why it's necessary. The only ambiguous nengo in the article are Showa and Heisei, and that sort of information would at best fill a footnote, not a whole separate section.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:45, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, the emperors were (posthumously) named after their eras, not the other way around. It is inaccurate to say that "the reader knows where the eras got their names", because this article doesn't explain how and why these era names were selected. I had thought it implied that the emperors were name after their eras, but apparently I was wrong. You, one of this article's principal authors, have misunderstood this fact, as you have now stated at least four times that you think the eras were named after the emperors, when in fact Emperor Meiji was only named "Emperor Meiji" 40+ years after the Meiji era was thus named. If "Emperor Meiji" was his name, him frequently being called "the Meiji Emperor" wouldn't make any sense, and the 40+ years people were referring to the then-current era as "Meiji" no one thought they were referring to the emperor, because they weren't. It didn't become his name until he died. The fact that you have misinterpreted it is the best evidence we could ask for that we need to clarify this in the article, because if one of the authors can get such an inaccurate picture from our article, we MUST assume our readers will as well. It therefore needs to be clarified inline that the Meiji through Heisei eras have been thus named because of the successive emperors' four reigns -- not because of the emperors themselves -- and that these era names subsequently became the posthumous names of the emperors themselves. @Curly Turkey: Can you back me up on this? You don't address the issue in your post below, and I'm fighting a losing battle trying to explain this to Curtis; I would just cite a source, but for Japanese this fact is just so blue that none of the dictionaries I have access to at the moment found it worth clarification. Hijiri 88 (やや) 05:50, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I never misinterpreted anything, though you seem to still be misunderstanding me. The names of the reigns of Meiji and Taisho and the names of the emperors are the same, so it's clear to readers why the periods have those names. A detailed explanation of nengo is unnecessary, because we can hyperlink the term. We don't really need to explain why the Meiji period, when Emperor Meiji reigned, is named as such. Rather than repeating ourselves, we should be making concrete recommendations about the article text.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:00, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Nor did I misinterpret anything. I know exactly what you are saying. Yes, the emperors and eras have the same names -- I already clarified this before you even posted in this section. But your (somewhat off-topic) comments indicate that you think the eras were named after the emperors, when in fact the emperors were named after the eras. You are still making this mistake when you say "it's clear to readers why the periods have those names" -- you should be saying that it's clear to readers why the emperors have those names. And I think that if you can make this kind of mistake, then we should definitely be clarifying the issue for our readers. Please indicate to me whether you still think the eras were named after the emperors or vice versa. And if the former, please explain why the term "the Meiji Emperor" exists. Please also explain why the names sound so much more like descriptions of periods (enlightened reign, luminous peace, etc.) than descriptions of people, and why they look more like the earlier era names than the early emperors' names. Hijiri 88 (やや) 06:13, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I told you in my last post we should make concrete suggestions for the text of the article, but you're still ignoring the content-related issue. We could mention that Meiji and Taisho are posthumous names, but the name of the emperor/name of the reign is selected at the beginning of the new Emperor's tenure. Ultimately, what we use for the purposes of the article is the common name from our sources, and you can see in any of the cited history books that the name of the Emperor and the name of the reign are the same, which presents no confusion to the reader. This is the actual content issue that I keep on pointing out to you, so I hope you now understand what I mean.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:27, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I have presented concrete suggestions -- do what Curly Turkey says. I also gave a solid reason for this -- you, and therefore likely the majority of our readers, grossly misinterpreted a key aspect of modern Japanese history, and our article currently contains no safeguards to prevent us misleading our readers any further. We should be specifying that since the Meiji era modern emperors have been given posthumous names based on the eras. This would be best accomplished a separate section that clarified that this was not always the case, and summarized the role and function of the emperor and the court, and perhaps the shoguns and the prime ministers (and by that I mean 総理大臣, not 太政大臣 or 左大臣) down through history. It could also touch on the cloistered emperors -- the stuff I added on that to our discussion of the Heian period is a bit clunky, and could easily be moved out to a section on the emperors. Hijiri 88 (やや) 07:25, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I never misinterpreted the issue of naming the emperors. You misread what I was wrote, but I won't question your competence based on that alone. Though I still don't think a separate section on Emperors is necessary, I presumed that there was consensus for it. However, I was assured that the section would be "no more than two paragraphs total (maybe even only one)". I think delving into all aspects of political history would take more than two paragraphs, and therefore we should keep it limited to the emperors. The cloistered emperors are already mentioned in their relevant section, so I don't think we need to mention them a second time.CurtisNaito (talk) 07:38, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
We shouldn't be delving into "all aspects"—that's what links are for—but we do need to give a general overview, and I think we can probalby fit everything into one or two paragraphs. I'm predicting this before it's been written, so please don't interpret that as "it must be kept to two paragraphs or less"—how long it will be will depend on turns out really needs to be there. We should avoid any details we can reasonably get away with avoiding without misrepresenting the facts. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 07:53, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
There' s more to it then that:
  1. meiji's reign covered two nengō, beginning with the tail end of Keiō
  2. the nengō derive from the Chinese example, except that the Chinese eras were the reigns of the emperors. That this was not true in Japan should be explained.
  3. there were nengō during the split of the Northern and Southern Courts
I'm not suggesting anything involved—a brief overview of the emperors (the article doesn't even mention 660 BC—where else would that fit? Not chronologically!) and a brief explanation of the nengō, perhaps no more than two paragraphs total (maybe even only one). Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:45, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Are you sure that you want to mention Meiji's reign overlapping with Keio, even in a potential separate section? It seems like a rather minor piece of trivia to me. I suppose part of the problem is that the article, as it stands now, mentions no nengo prior to Meiji. We don't really need to explain something which is never mentioned in the article. If we plan on adding such information later to the chronological portion of the article, then an explanation might become more significant. As for 660 BC, I think that can be mentioned in the Nara period. If we managed to mention Japanese creation myths in the same sentence as the Kojiki, I believe we can mention 660 BC in same section as the Nihon Shoki.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:14, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, I'm pretty sure we want to talk about nengō—it's a pretty big deal in Japanese history, and I think "not mentioning it" is not really an option. The Meiji bit is kind of trivial, but stating that Meiji's was the first reign to correspond to a nengō wouldn't be true, would it? I think it's a matter of wording, and if questions are left hanging in the air over the details, we have all these wonderful hyperlinks to click for those who are curious. We could mention 600 BC in the section with the Nihon Shoki, but it's not really a chronological thing, is it? Putting it in a separate section allows us to properly contextualize it: "legendary accounts assert the line of emperors began with Jinmu in 660 BC, although the consensus of scholars ..." Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:29, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
For nengo in particular, do you think a footnote would be sufficient? I think it's a little dubious just how important the concept is. I know you have a copy of A Companion to Japanese History, which is 550 pages long, but notice that it does not mention the word "nengo" even once. The large majority of the books currently cited in this article make no mention of the word.CurtisNaito (talk) 02:51, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Most English sources I've come across never use the term nengō, but rather era name or somesuch. We've been using the term nengō here because that's what the Japanese article name is. Companion uses terms like "Genroku era" and "Kenmu era", sometimes without the "era" (so just "Kenmu"), and sometimes uses "year period" (as with Ōnin). No, the sources don't ignore the periods, and I don't see any reason to hide it in a footnote when it fits so nicely into a paragraph or two on the imperial family. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 03:28, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Okay, I'll add something like that, but I think one paragraph should suffice.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:00, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Re: "Okay, I'll add something like that":

Curtis, I'm sure you will call this an off-topic remark, but I don't know where else to put it (past experience has taught me that if I try to address issues with your behaviour by contacting you on your talk page I will be met with either a string of aggressive personal attacks or you lying about me to the admin corps by calling my peace offerings "threats").

You seriously need to stop and listen.

You don't own this article or its talk page. Not every comment here is a specific request either for you to do something to the article or for you to allow us to do something to the article. We are perfectly capable of making our own edits. What we are trying to do here, though, is have a discussion about what the best way forward is. Even if we were all already 100% and in agreement, the edit would be ours to make. Setting aside for a moment whether you are the most capable of determining the consensus on these points and formulating the best wording (you aren't), the fact is that this isn't a GA review: other users are allowed discuss general improvements to the article without meaning explicitly "this should be", and your unilaterally adding your own version of the "consensus" wording is highly disruptive, as it has the effect of shutting down whatever constructive discussion might have taken place.

Your recent article edits have all been to this effect, and your talk comments have not helped.

Please stop acting like the arbiter of what does and doesn't belong in this page, and start adding your opinion to the pool like everyone else is trying to do.

Hijiri 88 (やや) 07:58, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

Well, your above comment has little to do with article content, but is full of obviously false aspersions. It's fine to discuss things on the talk page, but it can't be all discussion. We shouldn't waste our time with discussion just for the sake of discussion. Eventually edits have to be made to the article as well, and I have a proven record of making high-quality edits to this article. I won't assume that you have the time or secondary sources necessary to implement a certain specific change unless you clearly say that you do. I assume here that discussion takes place in order to produce edits, and therefore I will be editing the article based on what goes on in the talk page.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:14, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
full of obviously false aspersions Hello, Kettle? This is Curtis. You're black.
Pointing out the facts of the situation is not the same as expressing an opinion on how to address those facts.
Both are perfectly acceptable.
Your attempts to interpret others' statements of fact as either "off-topic" failures to present concrete proposals, interpret others' opinions as agreeing with your opinion, and then inserting your opinion into the article as though it was a consensus are ... not ...
Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:33, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I've never done anything like that though. Anyone is free to edit the article as long as they have high quality secondary sources at their disposal. The information I inserted was accurate and took into account the views of other users. If you want the consensus to be clearer, it would help if you made more posts about article content and less posts like the one above.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:39, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Anyone is free to edit the article Yes, except that you always jump in and make other users' edits for them, usually messing something up and occasionally even "interpreting" that they want you to make the edit when they said nothing of the sort, with the effect of shutting down an ongoing discussion. And then sometimes (usually in the early days of a dispute) you outright revert any edit you don't agree with it because it isn't supported by "consensus" (read: your opinion), and then if they resist you go to ANEW and request they be blocked. All this while your edits, include the massive unilateral rewrite in August, are never supported by consensus. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:38, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
No, that isn't true. Even in August, I announced my intentions on the talk page and waited for consensus before editing. One other user may disagree, but I edited in accordance with the overall consensus. Just reverting for no reason is not useful. If you revert you should say what you disagree with about the text.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:53, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── "that isn't true" is a bald-faced lie. Anyone can Ctrl+F either your contribs or this page's history (or, for example, the history of the Emperor Jimmu article) for the word "consensus" and see you reverting any unilateral (or even popular) edits that you happened to disagree with.

As for content-based argument that you shouldn't be the one to write the "consensus" wording because you already mucked it up once ... be careful what you wish for ...

"The earliest works of Japanese history" --> "The early historical works Kojiki and Nihon Shoki"

Reason: They are the earliest extant works; scholars are unanimous that they used earlier works of Japanese history that we no longer have.

"the legendary emperor Jimmu" --> "the legendary figure Kan'yamato Iware-biko"

Reason: "the emperor was born and became the Emperor" looks silly, and the name "Jimmu" was invented out of whole cloth by Omi no Mifune half a century after the historical/religious works in question were completed. Wikilinking our article Emperor Jimmu should make up for the relative unfamiliarity of the modern Tokyo pronunciation of the older term.

"descended from the sun goddess" --> "descended from Amaterasu, the sun goddess"

Reason: Why not name her in the text?

"became the first Emperor of Japan in 660 BC" --> "became the first Emperor of Japan"

Reason: It is absolutely unacceptable to say "the earliest works of Japanese history say ... in 660 BC", as this simply is not true. If Farris said this, he may have been referring to the Shoki and some later work, as the Kojiki is not generally treated as a work of "history" so much as "religion" or "literature"; this is acceptable for Farris to do --his readership know what he means, but I don't think we should follow as our readership do not. I would also be amenable to clarifying that "the Nihon Shoki, not the Kojiki says this".

"Many modern historians consider Sujin the true first Emperor" --> "Scholars have speculated that the tenth canonical emperor, Sujin, was the first historical emperor"

Reason: I don't have the names of the scholars in question on hand (Henshall neither names them nor calls them "historians"), but if I were a betting man I'd say most are not 歴史学者 but rather 古典文学研究者 or 神道学者 who apply historical method to their research, and write about "stuff that happened in the past"; most specialists in the Kojiki are. I have no problem with calling Bart Ehrman and Donald Keene "historians", but I know some Wikipedians do. And mentioning Sujin's canonical number is key here. And "first true emperor" is ambiguous: our source clearly isn't saying Sujin was the first "true emperor" as opposed to prominent chieftain. Also, I'm posting from a phone but the emperor's name should conform to MOS-JA.

"318 AD" --> "318 CE"

Reason: I'm sorry if I've forgotten the policy on mixing CE and BC (as opposed to BCE) but the confessional implications of "AD" make it obviously much more problematic than BC.

"most of Japanese history" --> ?

Reason: This article's interpretation of "history" (stuff that happened in the past) makes this statement practically a given. But also, given the power wielded by former emperors throughout much of the Heian period, and the lack of any centralized government for most of the Muromachi period, this statement seems like an oversimplification that requires elaboration so as not to be misleading.

"Since 1868 each era, including the Meiji, Taishō, Shōwa, and Heisei, have corresponded to the reign of one emperor." --> "Since 1868, each era has corresponded to the reign of one emperor. The four eras since 1868 have been Meiji, Taishō, Shōwa and Heisei."

Reason: It's nerdy, I know, but the commas and lack thereof were kinda weird, the verb conjugation was wrong, and most of all we shouldn't say "including" and then list all of the included items.

Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:06, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

By the way, please don't take the above as an indication that if you implement all of my proposed alterations I will automatically support your addition. Your addition had, for instance, completely neglected most of my earlier suggestions, and my criticisms above do not address this. And even if you did include everything I want, I still want to hear from some of the other contributors before anything of this sort is included in the article. We need to discuss. Let's start doing that, shall we? Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:19, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

I went with what the reliable sources said. Farris refers to him as Jimmu, not Kan'yamato Iware-biko, and according to Farris he was said to have ascended the throne in 660 BC. The sun goddess is not named by Farris, and while I could have called her Amaterasu, I didn't think it was necessary. Henshall calls Sujin, "the first verifiable emperor", and the history books which are cited for this material are certainly written by historians like Jonathan Kidder. Weston says "In Japan's long history, [figurehead status] has been the emperor's usual role." Also, I think we are obliged to use BC/AD unless you want to change all references to BC/AD in the article to BCE/CE which are not currently in use in this article. We might as well bring back the section. It's better to modify the existing proposal then blow it up and start again.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:28, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Farris refers to him as Jimmu No, Farris referred to him as "Emperor Jimmu", which is his canonical name; saying "Jimmu became Emperor Jimmu" sounds silly. And that his name was not "Jimmu" because this name was invented in the latter half of the eighth century is an easily verifiable fact (by sheer coincidence, I wrote this into Wikipedia three minutes before you added this to this page).
according to Farris he was said to have ascended the throne in 660 BC What on earth does "he was said" mean? Farris has not spoken to anyone alive in the eighth century! You surely mean "it was written that he ascended the throne in 660 BC"? And where does Farris say it was written? Please explain, as I already asked you to. You are making off-topic commentary while the rest of us are trying to discuss article content in a concise and direct matter.
The sun goddess is not named by Farris, and while I could have called her Amaterasu Per WP:BLUE, calling her by her name even if your source does not is acceptable. This also applies to "Kan'yamato Iware-biko", by the way.
"the first verifiable emperor" Yes, so you are admitting you misquoted your source then? "verifiable" and "true" are different, and when historians frequently talk about the early Japanese "emperors" (even the ones who existed and are "verifiable") not being "true emperors" you should use a less ambiguous term.
history books which are cited for this material are certainly written by historians like Jonathan Kidder That's a lie. He cited two works, one an article by Kidder, the other Philippi's translation of the Kojiki. Have you checked these sources? Which one is relevant to the text you wrote into our article? Philippi, a historical linguist, is the very definition of what I meant when I said scholars who write about "the past", applying critical historical method, but shouldn't be called professional "historians".
Weston says "In Japan's long history, [figurehead status] has been the emperor's usual role." Again, you are avoiding the question -- why did you not include a comprehensive summary of the emperor's shifting position throughout Japanese history, like I had already said would be preferable? What your source says here is completely irrelevant, because you free to choose a different source that supported the text you should have added to the article.
I think we are obliged to use BC/AD unless you want to change all references to BC/AD in the article to BCE/CE which are not currently in use in this article "BC" is used in the article five times, and "AD" six. It would not be that big a deal; shall we have a discussion on this point? WP:ERA says that we should not change it without a content-based reason -- does the fact that the majority of Japanese are not Christians and would find the era designation "Anno Domini" odd count?
the existing proposal What existing proposal? You added an error-laden, poorly-written mess to the article, and are now trying to use it to shut down discussion of what everyone else thinks should be in the article -- that's not a "proposal".
Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:02, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
These are quibbles, but not errors. You don't appear to have found any mistakes at all. However, I didn't want to plagiarize the sources, so I had to use my own words. I could have quoted the source and used the word "verifiable", though the word "true" carries the same meaning in this context in contrast with legendary figures. Farris doesn't exactly call him "Emperor Jimmu", he says, "[In the Kojiki and Nihon Shoki] The presumed 'first emperor' Jinmu supposedly ascended the throne in 660 BCE." Kidder and Philippi are both authors of many works of Japanese history, so it's unclear why anyone would object to them being called historians, among various other possible titles. However, I don't think that "a comprehensive summary of the emperor's shifting position" is appropriate because that's already covered in the chronological history. The separate section on the emperors was not supposed to exceed two paragraphs. You yourself called a section on political history a "non-starter", but going over the evolution of the imperial institution step-by-step is political history.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:18, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Referring to the oldest extant works as "the earliest works" is an error. Stating that these "works" said something when only one of them said that thing is an error. I have found probably close to a hundred errors and mistakes (or perhaps deliberate misrepresentations) in your edits to this article and the other articles you followed me to -- you just refuse to acknowledge them. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:54, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Henshall called the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki "the first real books produced in Japan". I'm not refusing to admit mistakes, I just believe that the views of scholars are more valid than the personal opinion of Wikipedia users. I believe I have probably identified a hundred errors or so with your edits, but I'm willing to accept that many of those were more differences of interpretation than outright errors. Even so, there are some cases like this where Wikipedia users simply need to be humble enough to admit that their personal opinions are not as valid as those of credentialed scholars.CurtisNaito (talk) 14:01, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
"The emperors have not historically been Japan's most important political institution" --> That is just wrong, in fact one could argue that the emperor has been (and maybe, to some extent, still ist) the most important political institution, even if the actual person itself had relatively little direct political power: those who controlled the emperor, controlled the state, because only the emperor was, because of the descent and ancient age of the dynasty, the legitimate ruler and only he could officially appoint a steward to rule in his name and therefore, through his prestige , lend credibility to those who ruled in his name. The prestige and importance of the institution can not be stressed enough. Its also the oldest japanese institution, predating every written text. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:32, 17 November 2015 (UTC)
IP, I'm sorry; I sympathize with anyone who is trying and failing to argue with Curtis, but on this point he was technically correct. While I don't think being "Japan's most important political institution" is what should determine what gets a section and what doesn't (none of our other sections are named for important political institutions -- most of them are named for the places where important political institutions were located), he is technically right; throughout almost all of the middle ages and early modern period, and even a fair amount of the late classical period, the emperor was a powerless figurehead who was enthroned, manipulated and dethroned entirely on the whims of non-imperial regents, shoguns and others. The latter may have required the emperor to confer on them legitimacy, but if he didn't they could always get rid of him and put someone else on the throne. The one fairly-lengthy exception was the 院政期 (at least until Kiyomori and Yoshitomo), when retired emperors were the most powerful people in Japan. Hijiri 88 (やや) 05:50, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
@Hijiri88: I do not think that we disagree that much. I merely differentiate between the Institution of the Emperor (that was of paramount importance, and in fact, culturally, religiously and politically the most important institution, at least in my opinion) and the actual person occupying the throne (which had in fact relatively little personal power and could be deposed or overruled). I do not think that the emperors should get an extra section, no other history-article has such a section for the head of state, but at least the deaths and ascensions of the more recent emperors (since Komei or Meiji) should be explicitly mentioned. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:20, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
  • 645 is traditionally called Taika 1: well, no, the first year is normally (always?) called 元年, is it not? Are there exceptions? "Taika 1" is what we say in English, not what they say in Japanese. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 08:03, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Maybe Beasley meant in Japanese style. He wrote, "Years are identified by their serial place within them: thus Taika 1=645, Taika 2=646, and so on until the nengo is changed."CurtisNaito (talk) 08:14, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

Dubious explanation of "cloistered rule"[edit]

"the reigning emperor would retire early to manipulate the nominally ruling emperor from behind the scenes"? What is on Totman 151-152 that verifies this? There was one controlling emperor (the 上皇) at any given time, who had usually retired decades earlier; the reigning emperors would retire early because the powers that be wanted to push him out, not in order to immediately move into a position of power himself. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:34, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

"a series of retired emperors converted the imperial legacy of abdication and oversight, which traced back to the days of Jitō and Genmei, into a century of dominance after 1050... after retiring in 1086 [Shirakawa] enlarged his insei structure and expanded the number of shōen it administered... this rule by retired emperors constituted a vigorous reassertion of imperial governance..." As was common during this period, Shirakawa did not abdicate with the intention of giving up power.CurtisNaito (talk) 11:53, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
So what you're saying is you made it up and put it in the mouth of your source. Awesome -- I didn't expect anything less. Hijiri 88 (やや) 11:56, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
No, read what I quoted above. A reigning emperor retired, but continued to exercise the authority of the imperial institution right after "retirement". This was called insei.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:01, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
It's the exact same description you can find in any book of Japanese history. Henshall describes insei as follows: "As with the tactic of the Fujiwara regents a junior would be enthroned, but this time he was controlled by an abdicated emperor rather than a regent... It was used by retired emperors such as Shirakawa"CurtisNaito (talk) 12:05, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
So what you're saying is your description of the system as involving all reigning emperors retiring early of their own volition, in order to immediately move into positions of control behind the curtain, is directly contradicted by more than one of your sources? Keep digging that hole for yourself, Curtis. Hijiri 88 (やや) 12:09, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, all I can do is quote the relevant material and it's up to you whether or not you read it. As noted above, emperors like Shirakawa retired in order to wield authority through the "junior" nominally reigning emperor.CurtisNaito (talk) 12:37, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I did read the quotes you provided. And I read the same information in dozens of other sources, years ago, and probably years before you ever even heard the name "Shirakawa". Your prose in the article, though, did not say the same thing as the quote you provided above, or any of those other sources. Anyone who looks can clearly see this. You need to stop this and learn to properly cite sources. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:23, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I also have read the same information in many dozens of sources. I certainly have no doubt about the accuracy of the information based on both the quotes above, and numerous other reliable sources. I've said before that I think you sometimes interpret sources in an overly loose manner, but in this case both of the sentences which were inserted into the article were equally accurate rewordings of the original text.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:28, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
Curtis, please read WP:TALKNO. It doesn't matter whether the sources cited are accurate to the real world. Whether what you wrote is accurate to the real world is also secondary. All that we are supposed to be discussing here is whether what you wrote is accurate to the cited sources. It wasn't, and your projecting your own dubious interpretations of sources onto me is ... highly disruptive, to say the least. What did you mean by "the reigning emperor"? What did you mean by "would"? What did you mean by "to"? Shirakawa-in ruled from behind the curtain during the reigns of three separate emperors, the second of whom retired while Shirakawa-in was still alive -- did he retire of his own volition with the intention of manipulating the nominally reigning emperor? There were two living retired emperors for that six-year period -- who was "the" cloistered emperor? None of your sources contradict what I am telling you, but somehow what you wrote does -- please explain this fact. Hijiri 88 (やや) 13:49, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I had to summarize the source in my own words in order to avoid plagiarism. The source doesn't use words like "figurehead", "real power", and "retired predecessor", but even though you used your own vocabulary words like those, it doesn't mean that you are misinterpreting the sources. Asking me to define the word "to" is a little silly I think. If I adopted the same standards as you, I would have to conclude that all of your contributions to the article are blatant misrepresentations of the sources. However, if you check the quotes above, all I did was the same thing you did, rephrase the original text into a new sentence reflecting the meaning and intent of the original.CurtisNaito (talk) 13:56, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm not asking you to define "to". I'm asking you to explain what you meant. You clearly said something different from what your source said. "to" implies that all emperors retired early with the intention of continuing to control the throne. Hijiri 88 (やや) 21:55, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
In general they did. The term used in this article is "cloistered rule" which is insei in Japanese. During this period, cloistered emperors like Shirakawa had abdicated with the goal of continuing to rule, as you can see from the term "cloistered rule". Totman refers to it as "abdication and oversight". The phrasing I used held closely to the wording of the original, which is generally my goal when citing sources.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:03, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
During this period, cloistered emperors like Shirakawa had abdicated with the goal of continuing to rule And apart from the curious use of the past-perfect, I would have had very little to argue about. But your version of the article (1) didn't name Shirakawa anywhere, (2) implied that all emperors retired early for this purpose, (3) implied they did this of their own volition and (4) implied that upon abdication all emperors immediately became "cloistered rulers". This created a logical gap in the article: if the reigning emperor had the power to choose the date of his resignation and did so for the sole purpose of excercising the power of a retired emperor immediately on abdication, why did he not just excercise this power in order to rule the country? And an even bigger problem is what happened when there was more than one cloistered emperor at a time. Hijiri 88 (やや) 22:50, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
A degree of summarization is always necessary when writing this sort of article. I was summarizing two pages in one sentence. The version I wrote didn't state any of the points above, though maybe if you are imaginative enough the implication might enter your mind. Your version says, "real power was held by a retired predecessor behind the scenes". Although I don't want to engage in pointless nitpicking, if I did I could point out that Totman says that other forces in the court gradually attempted to take power back from cloistered emperors. My version can take that into account, but your version seems to imply that the reigning emperor was entirely a figurehead even in the later period. I summarized the text, but you can't honestly say that I misread or misrepresented the text without engaging in a wild exercise of imagination. At any rate, if the content issue is settled we can move on to other matters.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:01, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I'd be happy with that, but I don't think the content issue is resolved if you are still saying that your wording is better and mine introduces problems -- are you going to change it back while I'm not looking? Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:34, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, it may be true that my wording was a little better than yours, but what's in the article now is good enough that I don't see a need to change it.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:03, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Whatever is left to do to bring the article to good level status, I think we can do it. If there's more to be done, let's just list off what's left now.TH1980 (talk) 23:03, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
There hadn't been much discussion on the talk page recently, but I think the only two significant issues remaining are whether or not we should include separate sections on social policy and on the emperors. I'm not sure if there is any consensus to add these in prior to a good article review, but if there is consensus after all, then I will certainly add them in before the review is picked up. Alternatively, if someone else believes that there is consensus and wants to add these sections in, I suppose that would be okay.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:13, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
A separate section on social history would be okay, but I'm less keen on the emperors. We've probably discussed this enough already to know what kinds of information should go into the article.TH1980 (talk) 23:19, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
When it comes to social history, a variety of drafts have existed for a month and no one has yet objected to any of them. It would take no time to move the draft back into the article.CurtisNaito (talk) 23:28, 23 November 2015 (UTC)
There hadn't been much discussion on the talk page recently: because you've worn so many of us out. The issues have not been resolved—many of them have been entirely ignored. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:32, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
I haven't ignored suggestions. In fact, I attempted to add sections on social history and imperial institutions in accordance with suggestions. If you know of anything else that I can do, I will do it unless you would prefer to do it yourself. What we need now are the concrete ideas which should be implemented. Perhaps I was hasty in renominating, and I don't necessarily endorse TH1980's reverts, but if anything else should be done to the article, then what we need is a concrete list for implementation.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:09, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
You've ignored the requirement that you seek and recieve consensus to renominate before renominating, and there remains a long list of issues that you've ignored. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 03:39, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
Could you tell me an issue or two which you would like to see specific action on? I will listen to your advice.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:43, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
You can go back through all the discussions and digest what's already been written. You're not going to get a bullet list because those aren't the issues, as you 've been repeatedly told. We have issues with structure, with weight, with focus, etc. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:00, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
But the issues discussed above have already been implemented. I'll withdraw the nomination, but just saying "structure, weight, and focus" is too vague to act upon. Something more specific is needed in order to make changes. What topics are missing from the article? The structure of which section should be modified?CurtisNaito (talk) 04:04, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
They are not vague; they are buried. By you. You've been warned far too many times about WP:IDHT. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:47, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, maybe we should try to start fresh then. I know that you said that you didn't want to use a bullet form list, but surely we could outline something more specific than "structure, weight, and focus". A short description would be okay, but it should be more concrete.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:09, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
Let's get this straight: attrition is not consensus, and demanding that everyone restate and re-restate and re-re-restate what they've already re-re-re-re-re-stated is not acceptable. Deal with the issues, or give up on renomination. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:20, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, I did add the social history section on a few occasions in response to requests. I also attempted to add in something on emperors, and I am willing to modify and reinsert that section if needed. If any periods need expansion, I can add in additional subjects if other users would like additional subjects, though I don't believe any specific ones have been mentioned yet.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:26, 24 November 2015 (UTC)

Is there consensus to renominate this article for GA?[edit]

CurtisNaito has attemtped to renominate this article for GA [8][9], despite not having sought consensus which was the precondition. TH1980 has tried as well. Does this article have consensus to be renominated? Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:30, 24 November 2015 (UTC)

Comment We should just find out if the good article reviewer thinks that the article is at good article status yet, not start a poll.TH1980 (talk) 02:02, 24 November 2015 (UTC)

  • No, CurtisNaito is required to get consensus on this article before renominating, as per the conditions at ANI following the delisting. Conditions you are fully aware of. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 05:46, 24 November 2015 (UTC)

Support renomination[edit]

Oppose renomination[edit]

  • Strong oppose. This article isn't even close to GA quality, and there is yet a long list of unaddressed (ignored?) issues. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:30, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose for now - It does not meet GA standards yet, although we are much closer than a month ago. ミーラー強斗武 (StG88ぬ会話) 04:25, 24 November 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There really needs to be a checklist of problems to fix so people can spend time working on that rather than arguing endlessly on the talk page. Some progress has been made, but there is still a long road ahead if this article is to achieve GA status. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe · Join WP Japan! 00:16, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
    • Comment: we've tried the "list of things to discuss" route (check the archives), and the problem with that is that, rather than disucssing, CurtisNaito simply adds these things to the article without regard for appropriateness or due weight so as to rush the article through. For instance, I merely mentioned that many readers would probably CTRL+F for "ninja"—adding them was objected to on the grounds that ninja did not play a major role in Japanese history, and history books tend to skip them (no mention in Henshall, Tsutsui, Varley, Schirokauer, or the over 5000 pages of the Cambridge series), yet CurtisNaito has added two sentences to the article on ninja. One of CurtisNaito's biggest problems is his desire to get the article passed ASAP at the expense of actual quality, weight, balance, etc. CurtisNaito's approach will have to change if this article is truly to meet GA standards. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:34, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
During the good article review, I asked repeatedly for a checklist of problems, and all you told me, again and again, was "you are well aware of the very long list of items on the talk page of the article." I didn't really have much choice but to go with what was on the talk page, because no one was willing to list out the problems during the good article reassessment. There are a lot of proposed additions that I personally objected to on the grounds that they were not mentioned in any general purpose histories. However, I was the only one openly opposing them. I had to assume that they had consensus, because no one else was opposing them or making their own concrete checklists. In the case of ninja, I repeatedly said that I leaned against including it, but not a single person backed me up on that, so I had no choice but to add it in.
Naturally, I do support Nihonjoe's proposal for a concrete list of changes needed, which is something I myself have asked for a number of times.CurtisNaito (talk) 00:53, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Back on that treadmill: we've given you lists to discuss. You don't discuss them, thus the mess. If it were a matter of "X, Y, and Z are missing", then we'd simply add them (as we do) rather than give you a list so you could add them (it's not your article—we don't need to ask you to add anything). So back to the problem: your unwillingness to discuss things. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:14, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
so I had no choice but to add it in: Nobody asked you to put it in, so, yes, you had a choice. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 01:17, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, you can see from the quotes I provided that I cast doubt on the idea of including ninjas in the article. I suppose I was actually the only one discussing the issue, because no one agreed or disagreed me, or even commented on what I said in any way. However, when I asked you how the article could be expanded, all you told me was to check the talk page. Therefore I did check the talk page and I added all the suggestions from it. It was the only choice I had except for letting the article rot. The reason why I have been stepping up to the plate is because I can't assume other people have the time to work on the article. You yourself repeatedly said that "the article can rot." When you say things like that, I don't assume you are eager to make changes to the article. I have affirmed many times that you can change the article yourself if you want to add something, but if you don't have time then I can do it myself. However, Nihonjoe's proposal is the right idea. Those who oppose nomination should make a concrete checklist of problems and either make the changes themselves or else allow someone else to make the changes.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:28, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
You know exactly the context of that "the article can rot" comment, and you can hardly claim I'm not eager to make changes to the article after the amount of sourced content I've added. But we're back on the treadmill of burying all attempts at discussion, aren't we, CurtisNaito? The article doesn't need lists for all the reasons you've been told over and over and over and over and over. the article needs discussion about weight and WP:DUE and balance and ... everything else we've tried to discuss but that you've buried. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 02:36, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Nihonjoe said "There really needs to be a checklist of problems to fix so people can spend time working on that rather than arguing endlessly". Right now we're still at the endless arguing phase. If anyone opposes nomination, then they should move on to the next step, creation of a checklist.CurtisNaito (talk) 03:02, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Yes, we're endlessly arguing because you refuse to discuss. A checklist is inappropriate, and the reasons why have been spelt out enough times. Nihonjoe, as I said, we've done the checklist thing. Is it not clear now that that's not going to solve the problems with this article? CurtisNaito has basically declared he will not deal with anything that's not in a checklist, which means he will not discuss issues with weight, balance, etc. that have been ongoing problems with this article. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:20, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure the checklist approach has been attempted much so far. There has certainly been page after page of discussion on various issues, but little of it has taken the form of a checklist. I'll naturally participate in discussion not involving a checklist, as I have been, but it seems to me that a checklist as proposed by Nihonjoe would be a clear and organized way to present the issues.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:26, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
What do you expect to see on a checklist? As I've said, when "X" has been missing, we've simply added it. That leaves primarily structural and weight issues, which you refuse to discuss. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:36, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
I've discussed issues relating to weight and structure, but these sorts of things would be easier to both discuss and act upon if discussion was more structured. If a certain section is lacking appropriate weight or needs to be restructured in a certain way, then that could be noted in a checklist. Discussing "weight" in general is fairly vague, but if we have a list of sections which require more or less material, with indications perhaps of what sort of material, then it would move us forward in a positive way.CurtisNaito (talk) 04:45, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
The issue is not that it's "vague", but that the discussion gets completely drowned out every time it comes up. Like now. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:54, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
I think all we're discussing right now is whether or not those who oppose nomination should present a checklist like Nihonjoe proposed. I'm in favor of that, because it would make clearer what remains to be done. It would be better to "spend time working" than "arguing endlessly on the talk page".CurtisNaito (talk) 05:00, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Rather, it makes it easier to ignore everything that's not in list form and avoid any and all attempts at discussion. Remember when I first came here? I made a number of subsections of issues that I found while I was copyediting the article. They were either ignored or completely buried. You continue to refuse to engage in discussion over issues in the article, and this demand for a list is just another way to avoid discussion. What guarantee can you give us that the list will not simply serve you as a licence to renominate with consensus once you've superficially "checked all the boxes"? Because it's that behaviour and your attritional walls-of-words that are holding up this article. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:13, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Could you give an example of "subsections of issues" which were "ignored or completely buried"? I've been following the discussion but I can't recall any. I think all the relevant problems were dealt with. I don't think the list approach has been seriously attempted, and since Nihonjoe believed that endless talk page argumentation was holding up article improvement, I figure that trying something different is a good idea.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:58, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
And you see what I mean? Both of you, Curly Turkey and CurtisNaito, can't seem to have a civil word between you. You each accuse the other of causing all the problems, yet you don't see the problems you are each causing individually. I suppose you will continue on your present course and never get anything done because you each seem incapable (at least here) of talking with each other instead of past each other. As it stands, both you are being a detriment to getting anything done. Maybe you both need to take a couple months off this article and come back when you can act like adults and not argue incessantly. That's the only way something will ever get done. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe · Join WP Japan! 22:04, 28 November 2015 (UTC)
I don't think I ever accused anyone else of causing problems. Incidentally though, if you have any ideas for changes which should be made to the article, don't hesitate to elaborate on them.CurtisNaito (talk) 22:40, 28 November 2015 (UTC)
you are being a detriment to getting anything done: I though so, too, when I first came here and saw an number of editors incessantly arguing with CurtisNaito—for the longest time I simply ignored it and focused on prose issues. It's easy to see it that way when you haven't gone play-by-play through the exasperating length of this talk page. When it got to the point of actually trying to engage in discussion with CurtisNaito that I realized the problems really are quite one-sided. I don't expect you to see that from your vantage point, and I don't blame you for not going through the evidence, but I can promise you that a few months off the article will not fix anything, as it will do nothing to fix CurtisNaito's approach to the article. Any "solution" that doesn't deal with that will inevitably fail. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 00:52, 29 November 2015 (UTC)

A single example[edit]

So, the "Social" section was supposed to deal with social issues that could not seriously be handled in the main body (women's issues, burakumin, etc) because they were not clearly tied to the main sociopolitical narrative. During the course of "discussing" this (mainly an attempt to drown the idea entirely on CurtisNaito's part) it was never agreed that it would be desirable to move out social issues clearly tied to their times—the Edo-period social structure being a prime example. It was formalized at the will of the Tokugawa, played a key part in defining Edo-period issues, and dissolved with the dissolution of the Shogunate. In his rush to get this article through GAN CurtisNaito has resected this from its proper context and thrown it into the "Social" section, seemingly at random (the section is extremely poorly organized—I'm doing what I can to fix it). It's this "just-get-it-done" behaviour that's hurting the article, and is an issue that cannot be dealt with via a checklist. The "Social" section is a jumbled, disordered, poorly-thought-through mess that does not serve the purpose it was conceived to.

We need less haste and more consideration. Please throw the brakes on, CurtisNaito. There's nothing wrong with doing things right. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 06:37, 26 November 2015 (UTC)

Well, I believed that the section dealt with the significant social issues, but just in case further changes were needed, I also posted it in the sandbox over a week ago.[10] I wasn't rushing at all. I could have spent a year on it and the version which I inserted into the article would have been the same. You yourself made some copyedits to it in the sandbox, and I included the copyedits in the version I just inserted, but you didn't make any further changes. If you had had objections, you could have brought them up in the sandbox a week ago. In the sandbox, the parts on social history which you yourself wrote did include substantial information on Tokugawa social classes, so I figured I would eliminate the redundancy by putting all the information there. Do you think it's alright to repeat the same information in two different sections? I thought that the section was fairly well organized, but if you can think of a better way to organize it, then you can make a proposal.CurtisNaito (talk) 06:58, 26 November 2015 (UTC)

Structuring a path for improving the article...[edit]

...because there isn't a path, and I expect the same kinds of accusations about burying comments and failing to define article issues to persist here without it. And frankly, I don't want to see this matter come to ANI again, because it doesn't have to. Curly Turkey and CurtisNaito, it seems to me that there are some concerns with the article that a simple checklist (like this one) will not help. At the same time, I have found it extremely taxing to parse through the broader concerns with the article and why they are important for a GAN, and I imagine that is the case for at least some editors who are actively involved here. Some kind of structure is needed.

If you cannot reach agreement on some issue (and I suspect you will not on some matters), then you need to accept you cannot resolve it between the two of you and make efforts to bring in uninvolved editors and/or conduct an RfC on the relevant issue at hand. As I've said before, getting this article to some status or another is not a race. Your time invested in improving this article on Japan's history is valuable, so do not waste it trying to revisit the same arguments as though something will be different.

Having gone through the talk page archives and GA reviews myself, I've taken some time to identify and define proposals and concerns. A couple of important disclaimers:

  1. This is not a checklist. Some items may be appropriate to implement, but other items may need to be changed or disregarded. The History of Japan is a challenging article to develop, because there is so much to consider when presenting a large body of information. Be bold in addressing these items, but accept that you may not get it right and that other perspectives may be needed before a concern is actually addressed.
  2. Some of these items are specific and others are much more broad, and there may be multiple editorial approaches to consider in how to solve them. Discussion, especially with uninvolved editors, will probably be required for some of them.
  3. This does not include every concern articulated. I encourage folks here to add and revise this list as needed.
  4. Some of these items may have been addressed already, so please strike them if needed.

Please continue to use this table to highlight points of disagreement, proposed additions / revisions, policy/guideline concerns and where they exist, etc. I hope this will help move the discussion here in a more productive direction. I, JethroBT drop me a line 07:42, 26 November 2015 (UTC)


Article proposal or concern diff or archive section
Proposal to use general reference works and/or tertiary sources to help make decisions around sections, length, topics within sections, and what sources to use within particular sections. Talk:History_of_Japan/Archive_7#One_possible_way_to_address_this_problem, [11]
Proposed article structure and topics in context Talk:History_of_Japan/Archive_8#Restructuring
Proposed integration of Shūshin koyō andUnited States Civil Administration of the Ryukyu Islands Talk:History_of_Japan/Archive_8#Restructuring
Due weight / balance between 1) recent cultural & technological contributions and 2) political and cultural history Talk:History_of_Japan/Archive_8#Restructuring,
Disagreement over reliability of Totman and Henshall sources in the context of classical literature Talk:History_of_Japan/Archive_8#Working_with_the_nominator
Proposed integration of Talk:History of Japan/Social and expansion of additional social topics Talk:History_of_Japan/Archive_9#Talk:History_of_Japan.2FSocial
Some citations contain too large of a page range to be useful for readers [12]
Problems with how lifetime employment is introduced and contextualized in the article [13]
Missing coverage of historical and contemporary consumption of anime, manga, and J-Pop within Japan, as opposed to worldwide. [14]
Disagreement on how to handle article section divisions of social, political, and cultural topics across historical periods [15]
Integration of the concept of nengō and Japanese emperors [16]
General check needed for cases of synthesis and original research Wikipedia:Good article reassessment/History of Japan/1
Proposal that the article could use expert attention (but on what topics?) Wikipedia:Good article reassessment/History of Japan/1
Proposal for additional coverage related to Minamoto no Yoshitsune, Abe clan, Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, Date Masamune, and Aterui Wikipedia:Good article reassessment/History of Japan/1


Starting a discussion section here to help guide additions and changes to the above table. I, JethroBT drop me a line 07:42, 26 November 2015 (UTC)

I think that the large majority, if not all, of the above issues have already been addressed. I suspect that future discussion will need to focus around new issues, rather than the old topics listed above.CurtisNaito (talk) 07:50, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
@CurtisNaito: Some that I suspect have not been fully resolved are Proposal to use general reference works and/or tertiary sources to help make decisions and Disagreement on how to handle article section divisions, both of which seem rather fundamental to me as they concern the overall structure of the article. I don't see evidence that those issues were resolved so much as the discussions simply ended. I have not seen an attempt to identify an expert who could review the article, where they may be needed, or even if one is actually necessary. The Due weight / balance between 1) recent cultural & technological contributions and 2) political and cultural history has also persisted for some time now, and I haven't seen consensus on how to handle this based on available coverage in sources. I, JethroBT drop me a line 08:15, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Well, if more work needs to be done in those areas, I definitely think that the checklist approach could work in those areas. For instance, I already consulted Encyclopedia Britannica and World Book Encyclopedia and made sure to include all major historical events and people mentioned in those tertiary sources. However, if more tertiary sources need to be consulted, other users could make a list of the specific tertiary sources which need to be consulted in more depth.
Concerning the weight and balance issue, in that specific thread the only propositions which were made were for new topics to add to the article. No one concretely proposed deleting anything. However, all the topics mentioned there have already been added to the article. In the future the balance of the article can be changed further through either addition of new material or deletion of existing material. If we had a checklist of possible topics to add or delete, then the gradual implementation of that checklist would cause the article's balance/weight to change.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:25, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
I JethroBT Re: bring in uninvolved editors: this would normally be a great idea, but please take into account how many motivated editors have dropped out of this article already through attrition. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 08:05, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
If you know of any issues in particular which have already been resolved, you should consider striking them from list above as JethroBT suggested in order to reduce some of the clutter.CurtisNaito (talk) 08:10, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
@Curly Turkey: Sure, I get that. The atmosphere here is stressful, and folks will naturally disengage from that. But the last RfC I see from the archives is from 2009. Looks to me like it's high time for another one. I, JethroBT drop me a line 08:24, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment External factors (in which CurtisNaito, despite his constant denial, has played no small part) may soon prevent me from continuing my involvement here, but my proposal to check Japanese K9 history textbooks to verify that there are no more super-important topics every Japanese schoolchild is required to know that we have completely ignored has yet to be implemented. (This is not the same as the earlier, impractical "look at my list of general reference works" proposal that the Warlord of Mars posted just about everywhere without examining the debate in question.) But no one has any problem with my proposal, it would seem, so why it was left out of the above list is confusing.
And the "general check needed for cases of synthesis and original research" still hasn't been done except by me on the few Henshall citations I could check. My check came up positive in almost every case, mind you, which only underscores the critical need for this check before any further GAN is made.
Hijiri 88 (やや) 00:59, 29 November 2015 (UTC)
I have some general Japanese history textbooks, but not K9 in particular, so I haven't implemented that proposal myself. As I said though, I still think that Encyclopedia Britannica can basically do the same job. Until you yourself or someone else is ready to check the article with a K9 textbook, I think that general encyclopedia articles are more than good enough for our purposes. Concerning the check for source verification, a number of users have already done that, so it's unclear how much further we can go with it. I agree with Prhartcom who said back in October that source verification was already "done as much as possible." I certainly will continue to check the sources, as I have done already and as many other users already have done, but unless you know a specific source which needs verification, I don't see what more can be done here.CurtisNaito (talk) 01:13, 29 November 2015 (UTC)
I think that general encyclopedia articles are more than good enough for our purposes But neither you nore anyone else has actually checked any long encyclopedia articles to verify that we didn't miss anything. You claim to have done this back in August, but while Britannica mentions Yoshitsune our article did not. And while every Japanese schoolchild knows Date Masamune, Fujiwara no Teika and Sakanoue no Tamuramaro, most of the encyclopedia articles to which you refer, by your admission, fail to cover them. These figures are not, as you called them, minor/obscure, and they absolutely need to be at least mentioned in this article. We should try to figure out who else belongs on this list before renominating; your own track record (you claimed you had already done this) indicates we can't take your word for it when you claim you've already done this, unless you provide the details (title/author/publisher/date) of the book/article you analyzed and give a complete list of every person/place/event named therein. No attempt thusfrmar has been made by you or any other user to do so. Hijiri 88 (やや) 04:58, 29 November 2015 (UTC)
When it comes to writing such a brief overview of Japanese history, as we are doing here, then Date Masamune and Sakanoue no Tamuramaro would likely be considered obscure figures. Remember, this article has to be a lot shorter than the average high school history textbook. I noted earlier that very lengthy and critically acclaimed Japanese history books, like the 600-page one by Conrad Totman for example, never mention them. I did include them on your request, but in general we do need to focus on the most important figures and not the more obscure ones. Also, I don't know why you would say that I never checked any long encyclopedia articles. I did consult World Book and Britannica. Though even Britannica's article was longer than what is acceptable for Wikipedia standards, you can see from the current article that all the people and events are covered, so my track record is solid. If you can think of a specific book or a specific encyclopedia article which you think requires more attention, then mention it below and I will check or re-check it.CurtisNaito (talk) 05:11, 29 November 2015 (UTC)