Japanese Woodblocks from the William Elliot Griffis Collection


Katsuya Hirano, History/Asian Studies


Daniel McKee, Cornell University Library

Collection Type: 

Arts & Sciences



Japanese Woodblocks: Knowledge of the World in the Early Modern Period

Woodblock print of monkey and crabs

These 17th century Japanese woodblock printed books represent Japan’s initial attempts to understand the west and modernize itself. They are therefore of great importance in understanding the formation of modern Japan. These books, many of which are rare or even unique in US collections, have great appeal to historians, art historians, and scholars of cultural politics.