• Offered by School of Culture History and Language
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Asian Studies
  • Areas of interest Non Language Asian Studies
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Mode of delivery In Person

Law may arguably be described as the rules a society creates to govern how its members should interact with one another. Thus, in examining a country's laws and legal system we should be able to come to a better understanding of the dynamics and values of that society. The purpose of this course is to provide a foundation for understanding the place and use of law in modern Japan. The class will cover the history, structure, and fundamental substantive areas of Japanese law. Further, we will investigate and challenge some of the assumptions about the place of law in Japanese society. Topics covered in the first part of the course on Japanese legal structure include its legal history, judicial system, legal education, and legal profession. Topics covered in the second part of the course on Japanese legal society include Japan's views on litigation, foreigners, women, and minorities. Topics covered in the third part of the course on Japanese substantive law include the foundations and current topics in Japanese constitutional, criminal, contract, tort, and commercial law.Economy, claims for WWII compensation and reconciliation, and enforcement of criminal norms.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Enhance knowledge of Australia's largest export market through the disciplinary lens of law.  Develop critical analysis tools particularly for critiquing commentary of Japanese society.  Promote general research and writing skills through analysis of legal topics in Japan.

Indicative Assessment

The following assessment scheme is proposed:

  • online or face-to-face participation (10%);
  • 4000 word essay (75%): and
  • Wattle quiz (15%).

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


This course is conducted intensively over two weeks.  Classes will run 9am to 3.30pm on -

9-12  December

16-19 December

Classes will consist of alternating lectures and Socratic seminars.  The lecturing component will be recorded.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have successfully completed 36 units of university courses.

Prescribed Texts

Foote, Daniel H (ed), Law in Japan: A Turning Point (University of Washington Press, 2007).

Assumed Knowledge

This course does not assume that you have special knowledge of Japan or Japanese. However, if you have a background in Japanese or Asian Studies, you will be able to use this in your analysis of the topics covered in this course.




Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $3054
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $4368
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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