There are well-known dangers in framing the encounter between ‘West’ and ‘East’ in terms of a Western ‘impact’ and an Eastern ‘response’ or even of a Western ‘contribution’. Equally, however, there are dangers in being over-sensitive to charges of ethnocentrism. The initial stage in the encounter between Christianity and Japanese culture — that is the period between 1549 and 1639 when Catholicism was disseminated by European missionaries — offers ample evidence that a Christian impact, a Christian ‘contribution’ was one vital aspect of a dynamic cultural encounter. That it is nigh on impossible to measure the impact and quantify the contribution does not invalidate the point.
KeywordsEurope Folk Kano Koto
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