Review of Satomi Kurosu (ed.), Rekishi Jinkōgaku kara mita Kekkon, Rikon, Saikon (Marriage, Divorce and Re-marriage from the Perspective of Historical Demography)
This is an exceedingly restrained and for that very reason a highly enlightening work based on a life course perspective. It consists mainly of quantitative analyses of marriage patterns over a period of roughly two hundred years, from the early modern into the modern era, or the second half of Edo until the pre-World War II period. It is based on historical micro data found in Edo-era religious registers (census-type religious affiliation registration records, shūmon aratamechō) and local population registers (ninbetsu aratamechō) and on macro demographic statistics and prefectural statistics from the Meiji and Taishō eras. The result is a major achievement in the contemporary study of historical demography.