A new view on the relationships between Europeans and the Japan of the samurai

Toyotomi Hideyoshi y los europeos narrates the contacts of the man who unified J

Toyotomi Hideyoshi y los europeos narrates the contacts of the man who unified Japan with the Portuguese and Castilians in the 16th century


The author of this book , the historian Jonathan López-Vera, has studied the relationships between the government of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and the Portuguese and Castilians during the 1587-1598 period. With Portugal, the relationship was mainly established through the Jesuit mission, present in the country since 1549 and led by Alessandro Valignano. However, with Castile, it was established through the government of the Philippine base, with a series of diplomatic embassies in which the religious orders, especially the Franciscans, played a decisive role.

Beyond the traditional Eurocentric view, the author of Toyotomi Hideyoshi y los europeos shows this exchange period as one more in the history of Japan: affected by its own dynamics, and building one of the most turbulent eras lived until then in the country.

The case of Hideyoshi is unique in the history of Japan. The son of a farmer, joined the Oda clan conducting non-qualified tasks and rose until becoming the leader of the clan. Xthen, in less than ten years he completed the process of unifying Japan, after Nobunaga’s death. When he did this, his main objective was to achieve the political and social stability, and to turn this situation into the permanent status quo.

Toyotomi Hideyoshi y los europeos. Portugueses y castellanos en el Japón samurái is the fourth title of the collection " Transferències 1400-1800 ", co-directed by Joan-Lluís Palos and Joan-Pau Rubiés, which aims to study the different scenarios and actors of the exchanges caused by the emergence of the two great Iberian empires, as well as their extension and deep impact they had on the creation of the modern world. The three first volumes of the collection are Visiones cruzadas. Los virreyes de Nápoles y la imagen de la Monarquía de España en el Barroco , curated by Ida Mauro, Milena Viceconte and Joan-Lluís Palos (2018); El cronista de China. Juan González de Mendoza, entre la misión, el imperio y la historia , by Diego Sola, co-edited with the Confucious Institute (2018), and El Códice Boxer. Etnografía colonial e hibridismo cultural en las islas Filipinas , edited by Manel Ollé and Joan-Pau Rubiés (2019).

Jonathan López-Vera holds a PdF in Japanese History from Pompeu Fabra University (UPF), a master’s degree in History of the World —from the same university— and graduated in East Asian Studies at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). He majored in history of Japan, and has taught at the UPF and the University of Barcelona. He has taken part in conferences in Spain, Japan, Panama, Cuba, France and Romania. In 2016, he published Historia de los samurais, translated into English in 2020 (A History of the Samurai). At the moment he teaches at the UPF and is the author of the website www.historiajaponesa.com and co-editor of the journal Asiadémica.

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