Japan's history is so dense and complex, yet it is wholly enthralling. To delve into the post-Westernization of Japan, a quick refresh is needed on the culture prior to 1863 (during the Edo period) when Matthew Perry arrived at Tokyo Bay. What is fascinating to me are the many parallels that developed in Japanese culture and political structure to that of the West that developed completely separately, like their feudal system. It is so much like that of post-Normand England with lords, serfs and fifes. However, completely independent and truly unique to Japan is that of their two branched system of rule prior to the Meiji era. There were essentially two rulers of Japan: the Emperor and the Shogun. While the Emperor was in charge of cultural and religious matters the true ruler of Japan was the Shogun, who was appointed by the Emperor. The Shogun was not only Japan's military leader but also it's chief executive and economic leader. The Shogun was a Samurai lord, or Daimyo, who was able to amass the most military power. Daimyo held power over armies of samurai warriors and used these armies in massive power struggles all through the warring states period, a turbulent time of civil war in Japan's Middle Ages. The last dynasty or Shogunate was the Tokogawa Shogunate. During the Bakumatsu (the end of the Edo period) the isolationist policy of sakoku gave way to the Meiji-period's "enlightenment" that opened up trades to the West.