The 'nihonjinron' is a body of writing and thought which constitutes a major and highly thought of academic industry in Japan. It analyses the Japanese identity and presupposes that the Japanese differ radically from other people in their make-up. It believes that their uniqueness is due to linguistic, sociological and philosophical differences. First published in 1988, this book is a critical analysis of the thought on which the 'nihonjinron' is based. Placing particular emphasis upon psychoanalysis, which constitutes the centrepiece of the book, Peter Dale reasons that the 'nihonjinron' should be treated as a mythological system.