|Code of the Samurai
The samurai warrior class came to dominate Japanese society because for most of its history the country has been at war. Apart from the Mongol invasions of the 13th century and the debacle of World War II, the warfare has been internal warlords fighting each other, or the central authority of the shogun.
One has only to see some of the historical dramas filmed by the great director Akira Kurosawa, such as The Seven Samurai, Yojimbo, Throne of Blood, or Ran to get a vivid sense of what the samurai were all about. Once the strangeness (to Westerners) of the bizarre dress and armor is registered, and one gets acclimated to a different culture and age, the motivations of the characters become clearer. For the samurai, there is usually an issue of honor to re