Society Under the Tokugawa Shogunate

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Life in Tokugawa Japan was strictly hierarchical with the population divided among four distinct classes: samurai, farmers, craftspeople, and traders. Prior to the Tokugawa period there was some movement among these classes, but the Tokugawa shoguns, intent upon maintaining their power and privilege, restricted this movement. As economic conditions changed, the shoguns were less successful, however, in maintaining the rigid boundaries separating the other classes. The Tokugawa shoguns did not promote change like many of …

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…deprived them of the opportunity to develop any independent sources of wealth and power. This action eliminated any possible opportunity to revolt against their lords. <Tab/>Under the Tokugawa Shogunate, associations with the people were managed very well and with great precision. One of the reasons why this control was so meticulously executed was the size and extent of the shogunate. The population was smaller, and in turn, easier to supervise.