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Products for grant FO-273935-21

The Age of Nitrogen: Japan, Empires, and Postcolonial Asia
Hiromi Mizuno, University of Minnesota

Grant details:

Soil Goes Modern: Japanese Agriculture Meets Western Chemistry (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Soil Goes Modern: Japanese Agriculture Meets Western Chemistry
Author: Hiromi Mizuno
Abstract: This chapter (Chapter 1) discusses dynamic changes that took place in Japanese agriculture in the late-19th and early-20 century. When Gustaf van Liebig, German chemist and "the father" of modern agricultural science, started to voice concerns about the degradation of soil in Europe, he turned to the Tokugawa-era Japanese use of night soil as the ideal way to circulate nitrogen between agricultural production and urban consumption. Karl Marx used Liebig to come up with his (now famous) concept of the metabolic lift. Yet, Japan, which after the Meiji Restoration earnestly imported Liebig's agricultural chemistry, ironically came to have the most chemical dependent agriculture in the world by the 1930s.
Date: 09/17/2022
Conference Name: Midwest Japan Seminar at Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs