This is the first book-length study of the Yayoi and Kofun periods of Japan (c.600 BC–AD 700), in which the introduction of rice paddy-field farming from the Korean peninsula ignited the rapid development of social complexity and hierarchy that culminated with the formation of the ancient Japanese state. The author traces the historical trajectory of the Yayoi and Kofun periods by employing cutting-edge sociological, anthropological and archaeological theories and methods. The book reveals a fascinating process through which sophisticated hunting-gathering communities in an archipelago on the eastern fringe of the Eurasian continent were transformed materially and symbolically into a state.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: the beginning of everything?; 2. A tale of co-transformation: the history of modern Japan and the archaeology of the Yayoi and Kofun periods; 3. Frameworks; 4. Environment and the East Asian context; 5. Beginnings: from the Incipient Yayoi (900/600 BC) to the Late Yayoi I periods (400/200 BC); 6. An archaeology of growth: from the Final Yayoi I (400/200 BC) to the end of the Yayoi IV (AD 1/50); 7. An archaeology of hierarchisation: from the final Yayoi IV to the Yayoi V periods (AD 1/50~200); 8. An archaeology of networks: the Yayoi–Kofun transition (the Shonai pottery style and the earliest Furu pottery style phase, AD 200~250/275); 9. An archaeology of monuments: the Early Kofun (AD 275~400) and Middle Kofun periods (AD 400~500); 10. An archaeology of bureaucracy: the Later Kofun period (AD 500~600); 11. An archaeology of governance: the establishment of the Ten'no emperor (AD 600~700); 12. Conclusion.