Asakura Akira is mainly into Japanese politics and other Japan-related topics. See my /Five-year plan for details. My main activity is to cover the most basic facts of Japanese politics: Who held which office when and why (elections).
- /Diet directory: Reference tables, statistics and redlink lists (complementary to Projekt Kokkai in de.Wikipedia)
- /Results of the Japanese general election, 2012
- /Prefectural politics at a glance
- Redundancy policy
I try (and sometimes fail) to avoid making substantial edits on the very same topic in two language versions; redundancy – as in redundancy (engineering) – helps identify possible errors and misrepresentations).
- Messy editing
Since I am obviously (→) not a native speaker, I thank all users who boldly correct my countless typos, linguistic mistakes, Germanisms, Japonisms – and the occasional major factual blunder. I've been rather sloppy in respecting the en.wp's Manual of Style and other guidelines because I expected that the huge pool of English-speaking users would quickly correct my mistakes, far more efficiently than I could. Also, I'm not very meticulous in providing article links, context and updates. In contrast, I try to be rather "caring" for many articles I started in the German Wikipedia, not because I claim any form of ownership, but simply because there are fewer users to clean up any potential mess I create. I've realized over the time that there aren't so many Japan-editors even in en.wp after all, and will try to be a bit more thorough.
- "Official" translations
I do not care how articles are named and what translations of Japanese terms to English are used in Wikipedia, especially since I am not a native speaker. But just as I hate to be taken for a fool as a reader, I refuse as an author to do that to any reader. English is not an official language of Japan, so I fail to see an obligation to exclusively use "official" translations, as many of them are slightly off, in a few cases: consciously misleading a foreign audience. Some Japanese institutions, e.g. the coast guard, simply decide to change their "official" translation overnight while their name and the institution itself is unchanged. In my view, any (main) article about a Japanese institution (or for that matter: Chinese, Arabic, ..., [from any country where English has no official status]) should explain what the official name (in legal terms) of an institution is and what it means in plain English, even if it then decides to use the official (i.e. self-chosen) English translation.
- "Defence" or "defense"?
Depending on context, I use blocks or metres to measure distances. My usage of AE/BE and rarely other local varieties is very inconsistent and is often influenced by my real life activities at the time. (The twofold linguistic heritage of the British Empire that now spreads beyond its original borders in a global workplace: We non-natives increasingly have to give up part of our national identities and succumb to the lingua franca of the post-industrial age; but the natives have to accept that the non-native majority of English speakers distorts/enriches what had once been part of their national identities.) But writing about Japan, it's difficult to be consistent anyway because "official" English translations are not consistent – Examples: Before the central government reform of 2001, there was a "Ministry of Labour" and a "Defense Agency" in the central government; the House of Representatives usually translates gichō as "Speaker", the House of Councillors uses "President" as in some continental European countries; K.K. is translated as "Corp.", "Co., Ltd." and many other things by different companies; ....
- Sometimes, the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing.
During rare, usually short periods, several carbon-water based biological processing units constitute the virtual entity Asakura Akira. The co-contributors do not use any other Wikipedia accounts or IP addresses to make edits, and there is always one main user taking responsibility for all edits.
- "Tokyo is one of the three command centers of the world economy, includes the Izu and Ogasawara islands, and is a major international finance center, including the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park."
- "Hinohara is a village in the capital of Japan, the most expensive city for expatriates."
- I can only reiterate that I do not accuse any editor or group of editors of doing something wrong; Tokyo is quite literally special in its administrative structure. I understand that the policy has been to understand en:Tokyo as article for both the city and the prefecture. That often works fine as long as you write about government and law because they do form one administrative unit together and share one of 47 governors, one of 47 prefectural assemblies, one of 47 prefectural police forces, one of 47 prefectural boards of education, etc. But they are simply incompatible in many areas not related to administrative structure. The city can be characterized as one of the "command centers for the world economy". If the city is identical to the prefecture, can Iwo Jima, Hinohara or even many of the more sub-/urban municipalities, say Inagi or Kiyose, then be characterized as part of a command center for the world economy? How many multi-national corporations have offices in Inagi, Okutama or Ogasawara? If you can bear even more of my rants, take my abridged two-question Tokyo Quiz from the archive.
Tokyo in pigeonholes
|Shortest definition||ja||en||de||administrative subdivisions|
|a city (toshi),
major settlement with distinct history, admin. status, ...
|–||Tokio||If you prefer a narrow definition:
2 bugyō in 1867
1 prefecture in 1868 (only period when prefecture and city cover the same territory)
15 wards in 1878 (<80 km²)
35 wards in 1932 (≈480 km², )
35 wards in 1936 (≤622 km² minus small border corrections and land reclamation)
22→23 special wards in 1947
(In this definition "Hinohara is a village in Tokyo" becomes
"...village in Tokyo pref./"Met."/-to, (my est.) ≈40 km to the west of Tokyo".)
If you prefer a wider definition:
see the metropolitan area from some point in the 20th century
(But would anyone write "Kawasaki is a city in Tokyo"?)
|Tokyo City||Tokio (Stadt)|
|Special wards of Tokyo||Bezirke Tokios|
|a prefecture (to/dō/fu/ken),
first-level sub-national administrative division
|Tokyo=Tokyo Metropolis||Präfektur Tokio||(Parts of Kosuge and Shinagawa Prefectures and other areas are added in 1871)
15 wards, 6 counties/districts in 1878
1 city and 6 counties with 14 towns and 160 villages (+islands) in 1889
1 city and 9 counties with towns and villages (+islands) in 1893
1 city and 8 counties with towns and villages (+islands) in 1896
2 cities and towns and villages (from 8 former counties and 4 subprefectures) in 1930
2 cities and towns and villages (3 ex-counties, 4 subprefectures) in 1932 – Map (1933)
3 cities and towns and villages (3 ex-counties, 4 subprefectures) in 1940
35 wards, 2 cities and 18 towns and 66 villages (3 ex-counties, 4 subprefectures) in 1943
23 special wards, 2(→3, Musashino) cities and towns and villages (3 ex-counties) in 1947 – Map (1949)
23 special wards, 26 cities and 5 towns and 8 villages (from 1 former county and 4 subprefectures) today
|(8th century–1868)||The history category in ja.wp (東京都の歴史) includes Musashi Province. But as by the 19th cent. provinces were little more than a geographical name, it was not a prefecture, and extended into Tokyo, Kanagawa and Saitama, I wouldn't count it as a direct predecessor.||22 counties/districts + Edo (separated from Toshima county in 16th/17th cent.)|
|a metropolitan area (toshiken),
region around a densely populated core
(regions around Tōkyō (not necess. Tōkyō-to)
|Greater Tokyo Area||Metropolregion Tokio||Depends on definition:
- Municipalities from several prefectures or
- several prefectures
(all definitions include the special wards; most include Kawasaki, Yokohama, Saitama City and Chiba City)
|(defined by law, ja:首都圏整備法)||首都圏
|National Capital Region||–|
For comparison: Hiroshima in pigeonholes (under construction)
|Hiroshima (disambiguation)||Hiroshima (Begriffsklärung)|
|a prefecture (-ken) in Western Japan since 1871||広島県
|Hiroshima Prefecture||Präfektur Hiroshima||first governor (daisanji) of Hiroshima was Kōno Togama from Tosa in 1871
first governor (kenrei) of Hiroshima was Date Muneaki from Kishū in 1871
last governor (kenrei) and first governor (kenchiji) of Hiroshima was Senda Sadaaki from Satsuma (kenrei 1880–1886, kenchiji 1886–1889)
|a Tokugawa era fiefdom (-han) in Aki and Bingo provinces
(precursor to the -ken before 1871)
(would be "Hiroshima (Han)" in line with existing articles)
|In contrast, previously Tokugawa-held parts of the country (shogunal cities and shogunal domain) and a few places held by lords stubbornly resisting the new order (Aizu) had already been organized in [central government controlled] prefectures (urban -fu and rural -ken) in 1868/69 when the new rulers who came mainly from Southern Japan (satchōtohi) ousted the Tokugawa|
|a city (-shi) in Hiroshima, Western Japan since 1889
But all articles cover the city (toshi) in its entire history
(In terms of administrative precursors, that includes the city/urban district (Hiroshima-ku) from 1878 (see ja:郡区町村編制法)
and Hiroshima [prefecture]'s "major district No. 1" (Hiroshima-ken daiichi daiku) from 1871 (see ja:大区小区制))
|Hiroshima||Hiroshima||Notable?: One of not so many major cities which had not been under direct shogunate control|
|a metropolitan area (toshiken)||ja:広島都市圏
(To follow: == Saitama/Akita/Chiba/Aki/??? [preferably look for some place where there have been -ken, -shi, -ku, -chō, -son, -gun, kuni, ..., as many different administrative/geographical units as possible of the same name] in pidgeonholes ==)