试论日本近代自由民权运动的历史意义——兼论公民意识的形塑/Historical significance of the Japanese movement of

2018-11-04 11:08:51

意识 awareness Japan civic 公民



日本的政治民主化在二战结束后迅速发展。在1945-1953年美国占领时期,通过实行强制性民主改革,日本以急风骤雨式的方式一跃成为民主制国家。此后日本议会内阁制、选举制、地方自治等政治制度不断发展完善,并且还配套进行了以倡导自由主义和个人主义为核心的教育制度改革。教育制度改革强调公民应该主动推进和平、民主的社会生活,它成功地培养了公民的参政意识,保证了日本公民意识的不断健全与成熟,成长出符合现代民主政治的行为方式。
然而潜藏于人的灵魂深处的思想观念或意识,其形成与变革是一个极其艰难和缓慢的过程。据此,表征民族国家共通性的观念形态,既不可由喜欢与否而能随意取舍之,也无法达致政治、经济架构变革那样快速且立竿见影,而是一个细水长流,由量变到质变的缓慢的进化过程。虽然二战后正式民主制度和民主生活的形成是培育成熟的公民意识的必要条件,但是公民意识的形塑必然是一个维系着民族传统血脉、适应于时代背景的巨变、与国家政治现代化进程相协调的持续不断的演进过程。因此理解日本二战后公民意识的发展和成熟,就必须往前探索其历史根基与衍变路径。
日本二战后公民意识培养的成功,正是基于明治维新后其缓慢但是渐续的公民意识形成过程。1874年爆发的自由民权运动是日本近代第一次政治民主运动,在自由民权运动如火如荼的进程中,伴随着社会现代化水平达到一定程度,公民意识通过吸收日本社会原生胎盘中的有益养份,在民主主义思潮席卷日本社会的潮流中冲破了国家主义的阻碍,并且在大正民主运动中得到了实践与延续,巩固了公民意识在萌芽阶段的最初雏形与发展平台。公民意识在民主运动中得到普及与发展,加之战前作为运动成果的议会制、政党政治等民主制度的初步构建,对日本公民意识在二战后的全面发展具有举足轻重的意义和作用。在民主主义与国家主义的不断抗争与妥协中,非制度性因素与制度性因素交互作用推动公民意识逐渐形成和成熟。



Political democratization developed very fast in Japan after the Second World War. During the period of occupation by the US between 1945 and 1953, Japan was forced to adopt democratic reform and became a democratic country in a short period. After the Occupation Period, Japan established and improved a series of political institutions including the parliamentary-cabinet system, the election system, and the local autonomy system. Further, Japan launched reform in its educational systems with a focus to promote liberalism and individualism. The educational reform instilled the idea that citizens should actively develop and maintain peaceful and democratic social life. It successfully cultivated the awareness of citizen participation, guaranteed the continuous evolution of civic awareness toward maturation, and induced behavioral patterns up to modern democratic politics.
Yet it is hard to deny that the formation and transformation of ideas and perception deeply embedded in human’s mind is a very difficult and slow process. Accordingly, the perceptions that demonstrate a nation’s identity can not be kept or abandoned at discretion. Neither can they change abruptly like political or economic reforms. There must be a incremental process that cumulates quantitative changes before a qualitative change can happen. Although the establishment of formal democratic institutions and life in the Post-War period was a necessary precondition for the civic awareness to maturate, the formation and evolution of civic awareness has to be a continuous process that maintains a nation’s identity, adapts to the sea changes of the times, and serves the modernization process of a country. Therefore, to understand the development and maturation of civic awareness in Post-War Japan, it is a must to explore its historical base and evolutionary path.
This paper argues that the success of Post-War Japan in promoting civic awareness was exactly based on a slow but continuous process of civic awareness formation since the Meiji Restoration. The Movement of Freedom and Civil Rights started in 1874 was the first political democratic movement in modern Japan, during which civic awareness in Japan emerged. Such civic awareness absorbed the pith of Japanese culture and, empowered by the rising democratism, broke through barrier of statism. It continued to be practiced and improved in Taisho Democracy Movement and managed to consolidate its virtues gained in its early developing stage. Such historical development in civic awareness, plus the formation of some preliminary democratic institutions like party politics and parliamentary system before the Second World War, was crucial for its comprehensive development in the Post-War period. In the unceasing competition and compromise between democratism and statism, the interaction between institutional and noninstitutional factors pushed forward the formation and maturation of civic awareness.