- Inoue, Kowashi
- (1843-1895)A statesman of the Meiji period from Kumamoto, in the southern Japanese island of Kyushu. He is significant in the development of modern Shinto for his contributions to the Meiji Constitution of 1889 and the Imperial Rescript on Education (kyoiku chokugo) of 1890. Inoue joined the Ministry of Justice in Tokyo in 1870 and toured France and Germany on government business. He became closely associated with Ito, Hirobumi and with Iwakura, Tomomi who in 1881 assigned him to work on the constitution. Inoue's views on religious freedom were informed by those of the German political scientist Karl Friedrich Hermann Roesler (1834-1894), a professor of Tokyo imperial university and adviser to the government who recommended freedom of private religious belief but the regulation of public religious activity. From 1886 Inoue worked with others under the direction of Ito, Hirobumi to produce the final draft which eventually became the Meiji Constitution, emphasising the powers of the sovereign. He also developed the Imperial House Law and in 1888 became chief of the Bureau of Legislation and a chief secretary in the privy council. With the Confucian scholar and imperial adviser Motoda, Eifu he drafted the Rescript on Education as well as various other edicts and laws. He became Minister of Education in 1893 and drew up regulations for the establishment of public high schools and vocational education.
A Popular Dictionary of Shinto. Brian Bocking.