Poverty and its possible cures: Abe Iso and Kawakami Hajime

Masako Gavin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This article explores the views of two eminent Meiji intellectuals, AbeIsoo (1865–1949) and Kawakami Hajime (1879–1946), regarding poverty and its possible cures. Both men addressed this subject in the period between 1903 and 1916, a time which saw the rapid development of monopoly capitalism in Japan.Politically, this period was typified by the social and political oppression that followed the Public Order Police Law (1900) and the High Treason Incident (1910).The latter marked the beginning of the “winter” of the socialist movement in Japan. Abe, the father of Japanese socialism, and the younger Kawakami, a bourgeois economist and later a Marxist, were two of the more prominent intellectuals concerned with poverty. This article outlines their thoughts on poverty and its possible cures as expressed in their most representative works on the issue, Abe’sSaikin no shakai mondai (Current Social Problems), (1915) and Kawakami’s Bimbômonogatari (The Tale of Poverty), (1916)
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-43
Number of pages21
JournalEast Asia: an international quarterly
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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