Holidays in Japan: customs, rites, social functions.


The feast is an integral part of human life. He has long been inherent in the desire to celebrate an event in your personal, family or social life to certain rituals or ceremonies. Holiday-?it is a multifaceted social phenomenon. Reflecting the life of the individual and of society as a whole, it contributes to the formation of mentality of the person and becomes the socio-cultural value of society. In other words, the festival is a fusion of many aspects of the spiritual life of the people.

In the history of the holidays are reflected to some extent political and socio-economic features of the development of society and the interests and aspirations of the individual, strata and classes of society in this particular era. The study of ancient history the holidays shows that, carrying out social functions, they largely were of class character. Simultaneously, the festival has always United people, helped them to overcome feelings of loneliness, isolation, alienation, in the sense that it unites different strata of people. This side of the holiday for his skillful use of the ruling classes.

Perhaps, it is hard to find a country with so many holidays as in Japan. If you turn the pages of the Japanese calendar, you will see that on each day you have some kind of celebration: a festival, or a national, local or city holiday, the agricultural or ritual, or a celebration of some temple, or just fair.

This aspect of life of the Japanese people was highlighted in our country the Russian and Soviet scientists in the works dedicated to the history and culture of Japan: D. Pozdneeva, N. I. Conrad, A. E. The fragments from Turfan were S. A. Arutyunov, G. E., Svetlov, V. M. Kryukov, R. sh. Zharylkasynuly, G. B. Navickas, etc. However, the special monographs that reveal the whole complex of problems connected with the role and place of festivals in the life of Japanese society. This work represents a first attempt to fill this gap.

When choosing the structure of the work, the authors considered it necessary to show the evolution of the festival as an integral part of traditional culture, to reveal the origin, concept, content, attributes, and social functions holiday celebrations Japanese. Since the holidays are historically directly connected with the calendar rites, the authors deemed it appropriate to give the reader an idea of the traditional Japanese calendar.

The holidays are grouped by their content and the functions they perform in society. Christmas holiday complex the Japanese, like other peoples of the Far East, is one of the major holidays, so he is given a whole Chapter. A separate Chapter is dedicated to agricultural rites of the Japanese, one of the most ancient and gave rise to many other festive activities. Deserves special attention, according to the authors, and special consideration of the cult of nature, peculiar to Japanese and reflected in the seasonal celebratory rituals. From large group celebrations, in varying degrees, dedicated to children, the most popular were chosen and those that perform the function of socialization, ie introduce children and adolescents to the society. Great place to take Japanese holidays festivals related to individual episodes in the history of the country. These holidays are generally local, but some national significance. And therefore they are reflected in the work. Speaking about Japanese holidays, it is impossible to ignore non-working days of the Japanese calendar. In them was manifested, on the one hand, democratic gains of the Japanese people, and targeted social policy of the ruling circles.

The authors felt obliged to give a brief description of sources and literature about Japanese holidays, thereby paying tribute to those who have studied this problem.

The present work does not purport to be an exhaustive disclosure of such a complex and multifaceted themes, as holidays in Japan, but the authors hope that it will be able in some degree to highlight this important aspect of spiritual life of Japanese people and will allow a better understanding of our far Eastern neighbor.

Chapter 1. Holiday — an element of traditional Japanese culture

Socio-cultural meaning of the holidays

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