Publications

2017
Gordon, Andrew. “Ideologies of State, Market, and Gender from High Growth to “Lost Decades”.” In The Lost Two Decades and the Transformation of Japanese Society. International Research Center for Japanese Studies, 2017. Full Article URL
Gordon, Andrew. “New and Enduring Dual Structures of Employment in Japan: The Rise of Non-Regular Labor, 1980s-2010s.” Social Science Japan Journal 20, no. 1 (2017): 9-36. Full Article URLAbstract

A steady rise in what is called ‘non-regular employment’ is the most notable change in Japanese working life since at least the 1980s. Such workers accounted for nearly 40% of all employees by 2015. This paper focuses on the results of the turn to non-regular employment and identifies its distinctive aspects in the context of a long history of various forms of precarious employment. A historical perspective shows that newer forms of second-tier status, including some that can be termed ‘non-regular regular’ employment, have come to overlay continuing older ones. Important new elements include not only a far greater absolute and relative number of non-regular workers but also their far greater presence in the service sector. In addition, today’s non-regular workers differ in social characteristics such as age, education, and gender. The relative decline of social movements is a notable impediment in seeking reform, while the move away from seeing gender as a natural axis of differentiation offers some potential for addressing the issue.

2016
Gordon, Andrew. “高度成長から「失われた二十年」 へ ― 国家・市場・ジェンダーのイデオロギー ―.” 日本研究, no. 53 (2016). Full Article URL
Gordon, Andrew, Rudi Batzell, Sven Beckert, and Gabriel Winant. “Introduction: The Global E.P. Thompson.” International Review of Social History (special issue) 61, no. 1 (2016): 1-9. Full Article URLAbstract
This article introduces the present Special Theme on the global reception and appropriation of E.P. Thompson’s The Making of the English Working Class (1963). It aims to interrogate Thompson’s legacy and potential vitality at a moment of renewed social and intellectual upheavals. It emphasizes the need for an interdisciplinary and global reflection on Thompson’s work and impact for understanding how class, nation, and “the people” as subjects of historical inquiry have been repeatedly recast since the 1960s. Examining the course of Thompson’s ideas in Japan and West Germany, South Africa and Argentina, as well as Czechoslovakia and Poland, each of the following five articles in the Special Theme is situated in specific and different locations in the global historiographical matrix. Read as a whole, they show how national historiographies have been products of local processes of state and class formation on the one hand, and transnational transfers of intellectual and historiographical ideas, on the other. They highlight the remarkable ability of Thompsonian social history to inspire new lives in varying national contexts shaped by different formations of race, class, and state.
2015
Gordon, Andrew, Rudi Batzell, Sven Beckert, and Gabriel Winant. “E. P. Thompson, Politics and History: Writing Social History Fifty Years after The Making of the English Working Class.” Journal of Social History (special issue) 48, no. 4 (2015): 753-758. Full Article URLAbstract
These four articles revisit crucial concepts in the work of E.P. Thompson and the debates that follow him. Each looks forward to contemporary and future scholarship, and the real and potential relationship between historiography and social movements on the left. They reopen debates on moral economy, disputing how much of the working-class past is usable in the present. Particularly given the transformed nature of the state since the period of social transition in early modern England, this question seems urgent: can (arguably) backward-looking claims of traditional rights continue to serve to guide working-class resistance movements, given that they must invoke the powers of the modern state? Can ideas of class drawn from a period in which men were understood as workers and citizens, and women were not, be made useful in a different moment? Are there class formations possible under capitalism other than the bourgeois-proletarian antagonism to which we are accustomed? Do these challenges require a thorough rethinking of the relationship between such basic categories as law and political economy, class and gender? More recent social movements—indigenous, anticolonial, antiracist, feminist, and anti-war—might not have been recognized or countenanced by Thompson as “working class,” but might they be useful in conversation with the Thompsonian legacy of class analysis? Together, these papers push the boundaries of our inheritance from Thompson, and suggest ways in which new social and political contexts—new states, new movements, and a drastically changed global economy—can reanimate the political force of Thompson's work.
Making Sense of the Lost Decades: Workplaces and Schools, Men and Women, Young and Old, Rich and Poor
Gordon, Andrew. “Making Sense of the Lost Decades: Workplaces and Schools, Men and Women, Young and Old, Rich and Poor.” In Examining Japan’s Lost Decades, edited by Yoichi Funabashi and Barak Kushner. London: Routledge, 2015.
2013
ミシンと日本の近代:消費者の創出
Gordon, Andrew. ミシンと日本の近代:消費者の創出. Translated by Kaori Oshima. Tokyo: Misuzu Shobō, 2013.
A Modern History of Japan: From Tokugawa Times to the Present
Gordon, Andrew. A Modern History of Japan: From Tokugawa Times to the Present. 3rd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2013. Publisher's Website
2012
日本労使関係史 1853-2010
Gordon, Andrew. 日本労使関係史 1853-2010. Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten, 2012. Publisher's Website
Consumption, Consumerism, and Japanese Modernity
Gordon, Andrew. “Consumption, Consumerism, and Japanese Modernity.” In The Oxford Handbook of the History of Consumption, edited by Frank Trentmann. New York: Oxford University Press, 2012. Full Chapter URL
Credit in a Nation of Savers: The Growth of Consumer Credit in Japan
Gordon, Andrew. “Credit in a Nation of Savers: The Growth of Consumer Credit in Japan.” In The Development of Consumer Credit in Global Perspective: Business, Regulation, and Culture, edited by Jan Logemann. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012. Publisher's Website
Like Bamboo Shoots after the Rain: The Growth of a Nation of Dressmakers and Consumers
Gordon, Andrew. “Like Bamboo Shoots after the Rain: The Growth of a Nation of Dressmakers and Consumers.” In The Historical Consumer: Consumption and Everyday Life in Japan, 1850-2000, edited by Penelope Francks and Janet Hunter. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012. Publisher's Website
Toward A History Beyond Borders: Contentious Issues in Sino-Japanese Relations
Yang, Daqing, Liu Jie, Hiroshi Mitani, and Andrew Gordon, ed. Toward A History Beyond Borders: Contentious Issues in Sino-Japanese Relations. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Asia Center, 2012.
2011
Fabricating Consumers: The Sewing Machine in Modern Japan
Gordon, Andrew. Fabricating Consumers: The Sewing Machine in Modern Japan. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2011. Publisher's Website
Gordon, Andrew. “Social Protest in Imperial Japan: The Hibiya Riot of 1905.” MIT Visualizing Cultures, 2011. Publisher's Version
2009
Gordon, Andrew. “Selling the American Way: The Singer Sales System in Japan, 1900-1938.” Business History Review 82, no. 4 (2009). Full Article URLAbstract
From 1900 through the 1920s, Singer put in place its proven selling system in Japan, despite making remarkably little adjustment to local conditions, and with a fair degree of success. But the company was hurt in the long run, with a turning point in the early- to mid-1930s, by its refusal to adapt - as its local competitors did - to the expectations of employees and the limited means of potential customers. Singer's dramatic rise and fall in Japan reveals ways in which practices of global capitalism are simultaneously transformed and transformative as they take root in particular locales.
2008
A Modern History of Japan: From Tokugawa Times to the Present
Gordon, Andrew. A Modern History of Japan: From Tokugawa Times to the Present. 2nd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2008. Textbook Companion Site
2007
Gordon, Andrew. “Consumption, Leisure and the Middle Class in Transwar Japan.” Social Science Japan Journal 10, no. 1 (2007): 1-21. Full Article URLAbstract
The rise of a mass consumer society and the spread of commercialized leisure are aspects of global modernity in the 20th century. In Japan, these phenomena emerged to prominence in the transwar decades from the 1920s through the 1960s. This essay argues that the ascendance of middle-class lifeways, consumption and leisure prominent among them, took place through a process that involved the transposing of difference as much as the diffusing of sameness. It identifies a causal dynamic in ‘transwar’ history, which extends the concept beyond political economy and beyond the simple claim that continuities stretch across the purported break of World War II.
日本人が知らない松坂メジャー革命
Gordon, Andrew. 日本人が知らない松坂メジャー革命. Tokyo: Asahi Shinsho, 2007. Publisher's Website
2006
From Sewing Machines to Credit Cards: Consumer Credit in 20th Century Japan
Gordon, Andrew. “From Sewing Machines to Credit Cards: Consumer Credit in 20th Century Japan.” In The Ambivalent Consumer: Questioning Consumption in East Asia and the West, edited by Sheldon Garon and Patricia L. Maclachlan. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2006. Publisher's Website

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