Skip to content
Register Sign in Wishlist
Murasaki Shikibu: The Tale of Genji

Murasaki Shikibu: The Tale of Genji

2nd Edition


Part of Landmarks of World Literature (New)

  • Date Published: January 2004
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521539753

£ 17.99

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Looking for an inspection copy?

This title is not currently available on inspection

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • Murasaki Shikibu's The Tale of Genji, written in Japan in the early eleventh century, is acknowledged to be one of Japan's greatest literary achievements, and sometimes thought of as the world's first novel. It is also one of the earliest major works to be written by a woman. This introduction to the Genji sketches the cultural background, offers detailed analysis of the text, discusses matters of language and style and ends by tracing the history of its reception through nine centuries of cultural change. This book will be useful for survey courses in Japanese and World Literature. Because The Tale of Genji is so long, it is often not possible for students to read it in its entirety and this book will therefore be used not only as an introduction, but also as a guide through the difficult and convoluted plot.

    • New edition of a widely used and helpful guide to one of the greatest works of world literature - including a fully updated guide to further reading
    • This introduction examines the cultural and linguistic as well as literary issues surrounding The Tale of Genji
    • Written by an expert in the field who has taught this text for many years
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    '… an erudite commentary encouraging the reader to investigate one of the most important Japanese texts by exploring a plethora of ideas in a guided but open manner.' Forum for Modern Language Studies

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Edition: 2nd Edition
    • Date Published: January 2004
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521539753
    • length: 122 pages
    • dimensions: 201 x 124 x 13 mm
    • weight: 0.14kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus. 1 table
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Genji chapter titles
    Genealogical chart
    Part I. The Cultural Background:
    1. Politics
    2. Murasaki Shikibu
    3. Religion
    4. Language
    5. A grammar of sexual relations
    6. History and fiction
    Part II. The Tale of Genji:
    7. Sexual politics (chapters 1-12)
    8. Penance and restitution (chapters 12-21)
    9. A prospect of flowers (chapters 22-33)
    10. Dangerous obsessions (chapters 34-41)
    11. A passion for self-destruction (chapters 42-54)
    Part III. Language and style:
    12. The narrator's presence
    13. Kashiwagi's tortured mind
    14. Equivocal narration
    15. Poetry in prose
    16. Translations
    Part IV. Impact, Influence and Reception:
    17. Early textual history
    18. Murasaki in hell
    19. Medieval commentaries
    20. Tokugawa readings
    21. Modern readings
    Guide to further reading.

  • Author

    Richard Bowring, Selwyn College, Cambridge

Sign In

Please sign in to access your account


Not already registered? Create an account now. ×

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.