Houghton Mifflin Social Studies
Lesson at a Glance Outline

Chapter 9, Lesson 2: A Developing National Culture (pp. 227-230)

I. A Court of Refinement

II. The Literature of the Court
    A. The Japanese used the Chinese writing system, but also developed a set of characters for syllables, called hiragana, that were distinctly Japanese.

    B. Poetry was the favorite form of writing among Japanese courtiers.

    C. Diaries, tales, and long works of fiction were also popular.

III. Life in the Provinces
    A. Taxes paid by provincial farmers supported the luxurious life at court. Courtiers collected part of what was produced on their private estates.

    B. While courtiers were preoccupied with fine culture, provincial nobles took over land, creating large estates that were free of governmental control.

    C. Smaller landowners often gave up their land to the provincial nobles, becoming tenant farmers, carpenters, or menial laborers on the private estates.

    D. Peasants' lives continued with backbreaking farmwork.

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