In a course I attended about Japan, there was the mention of a "Steel and rice" coalition. I don't understand the concept, so I can't define it.

When searching for the phrase, one match was for the following, in "Japan Transformed: Political Change and Economic Restructuring" by Frances McCall Rosenbluth and Michael F. Thies:

The result was a "steel and rice" coalition backing the LDP, whereby heavy industry provided money for campaigns and farmers turned out the vote in large numbers.

The book compares it with an "iron and rye" coalition in nineteenth-century Germany. This makes me suspect that there is not a Japanese phrase that gets translated into English as "steel and rice" coalition, but instead English-speakers merely made a snowclone based on "iron and rye".

Is there a phrase that exists in Japanese that gets translated into English as "steel and rice" coalition?

1 Answer 1


「[農工同盟]{のうこうどうめい}」 is the only term I could think of.

I am pretty sure that it should predate "steel and rice" in English, but I highly doubt that it predates "iron and rye" from German.

  • It's literally "Agricultural-Industrial Alliance" though; the phrase"steel and rice" probably is unrelated to 農工同盟.
    – ithisa
    Jan 1, 2014 at 7:09

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