Hara, Takashi (Kei), 1856-1921, Japanese statesman, prime minister (1918-21). As secretary-general and later president (1914), Hara established the Seiyukai as the first powerful majority party by compromise with the oligarchs (see genro), distribution of patronage posts to cooperative bureaucrats, exploitation of public works legislation, and lavish use of election money. He was the first prime minister to form a party cabinet in accordance with principles of parliamentary government. He encouraged the extension of suffrage but suppressed labor organization. His administration was notable for the expedition to Siberia, the independence movement in Korea, Japanese participation in the Paris Peace Conference, labor unrest, and naval armament. He was assassinated by a fanatic.

See T. Najita, Hara Kei in the Politics of Compromise, 1905-1915 (1967).

or hara-kiri

Japanese ritual suicide by disembowelment, practiced by members of the samurai class. Suicide by disembowelment was favoured because it was slow and painful and therefore demonstrated courage, self-control, and strong resolve. Voluntary seppuku was performed to avoid the dishonour of capture, show loyalty to one's lord by following him into death, protest against some policy of a superior, or atone for failure. Obligatory seppuku was a method of capital punishment for a samurai, who would be beheaded by a second once he had made an initial stab wound himself. Obligatory seppuku was abolished in 1873, but voluntary seppuku continued to occur. Notable 20th-century examples included those of army officer Nogi Maresuke and writer Yukio Mishima. Seealso bushidō.

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The word Hara can refer to:

General Meanings:

Within Hinduism:

  • Hara as a name of the Hindu deity Shiva (see also Harihara)
  • Hara as a name of the feminine aspect of God (Ishvara), known as Shakti
  • Hara as a name of Krishna's paramour, known as Radharani
  • Hara in the vocative form becomes Hare, as in the Hare Krishna mantra

People with the surname Hara

  • Hara Takashi (原敬) (1856 – 1921), 19th Prime Minister of Japan
  • Yuko Hara (原由子) (born 1956), keyboard player for Southern All Stars
  • Hara Toratane (1497-1564) and Hara Masatane (died 1575), generals under Takeda Shingen
  • Hiroshi Hara (原広司) (born 1936), Japanese architect and author on architecture
  • Hiromi Hara (原 博実) (born 1958), Japanese ex-soccer player and former manager of F.C. Tokyo
  • Eriko Hara, Japanese voice actress
  • Yoshimichi Hara, baron, representative of Emperor Hirohito during World War II
  • Kenzaburo Hara (原健三郎) (1907 - 2004), Former House of Representatives Speaker
  • Hara Nagayori (原長頼) (died 1600), officer under the Oda clan
  • Hara Setsuko (原節子) (born 1920), Japanese actress

See also the Irish surname O'Hara

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