Any foray into the historiography of Japanese theatre written by Western theatre historians confronts the political and social interactions of both Japan and the United States, specifically the ending of the sakoku period in Japan and the Occupation and Cold War positioning of Japan after the Pacific War. This introduction will give the reader a basic overview of some of the major thematic concerns involved in the writing of Asian theatre history, as well as historicize the Occupation and Cold War eras in which many of the first generation Asian theatre scholars were writing and teaching in the American academy.