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Murasaki Shikibu: The Tale of Genji

Murasaki Shikibu: The Tale of Genji

2nd Edition

£17.99

Part of Landmarks of World Literature (New)

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

£ 17.99
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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
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    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

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    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

    Preface
    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

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