Division of Department of Japanese Studies Department of Japanese History

We study the state and society of Japan and the lives of its people alongside its history

Education and research in humanities and social sciences provides for the analysis of man and society from different angles. The discipline of history is concerned with the study of the past. Japanese history, in particular, studies the historical development of Japan: its state and society, the activities of its members, and the culture created by them, as well as its interactions with other countries, regions, and nations. Studying history at a university level involves more than memorizing established historical facts and theories. The main point of higher education is to teach the students how to use historical sources – that is, private and public documents and records created by people of the past – to reconstruct the period being studied through interpretation and analysis of those documents and to perceive historical events as interconnected segments in the chain of time.
Many of our students proceed to work in education or academia, as well as in cultural property conservation. In recent years, however, more and more of our graduates have been finding jobs in the public and private sectors. But regardless of the path you choose, you will always find uses for the skills acquired in your university years: the ability to actively search for information, reflect on it, and effectively articulate your conclusions.

Message from Senior


3rd grade, Humanities and Social Sciences
High school : Iwate Prefectural Morioka Daiichi

Recommended book : Riron Paradokusu: ronshōryoku wo migaku 99 mon by Miura Toshihiko
Reason : This book allows you to polish your logical sense by solving a selection of philosophical and logical puzzles. Thorough contemplation of these unusual problems sharpens your mind, and the answers expand your mental horizons. Furthermore, whenever the answer does not convince you, you are compelled to learn how to construct a critical or alternative opinion.

Highlights of the Faculty of Arts and Letters

I believe that the ultimate research goal of the entire Faculty of Arts and Letters is to answer the question “What are human beings?” Each department approaches this question from a different angle — in other words, each takes its own unique perspective. There are twenty five perspectives — and departments — at the Faculty of Arts and Letters, and you can train in the field you find particularly interesting. For example, I have been interested in Japanese history since middle school, so I aimed to join the Department of History since I entered the university. Even if you have not made up your mind yet, you will surely find an appealing research subject by sampling various courses. The opportunity to broaden your outlook will remain even after you select your major, since you will be allowed to take courses in other areas and disciplines.

To everyone aiming for the Faculty of Arts and Letters

It is a given that high school students must study hard, but I also would like you to find something you can only do now, something you can devote yourself to. It may be club life or school events — but it is important that you engage with them wholeheartedly. Do not leave things undone, or you will regret it later. I also advise you to find something that fascinates you and to keep accumulating knowledge about the subject. It does not matter what sources you use: books, newspapers, manga, or games. Deep interest in something fuels your motivation for learning at university. As a student, you will have many chances to expand your activities. I hope that you will challenge the world of the unknown with unwavering intellectual curiosity.