Ihara Saikaku’s novella, Life of a Sensuous Woman, reveals several unpleasant truths present in the Tokugawa period through the tales of the nameless woman. Many of these revelations show how the allegedly ‘polite’ society is not the ideal that many revere it to be; instead it is often riddled with deception and moral decay.
In the novel Like Water for Chocolate, Laura Esquivel provides an insight into the lives of family members and their experiences. In this literary work, the author uses magical realism to highlight the conditions under which the youngest daughter Tita and the rest of the family members live. The book discusses the difficulties faced by the protagonist in her attempts to experience true love and be united with the lover despite the constant risk of going against Mama Elena’s assertions that the last born daughter is not be married; instead, they should take care of their parents in their old age. Themes of violence, passion, and ridicule in the novel are what the book presents as the main challenges that face women on a daily basis.
The author portrayed how out of place the girl was by the time she returned. The girl’s encounters at school manifests her loss of identity and her helplessness. Once she returns to school, she finds that the school’s attitude to her has changed. “Perhaps they had never expected us to come back and had put us out of their minds once and for all long ago. One day we were there and the next day, poof, our names had been crossed off the roll books, our desks and lockers, reassigned, we were gone”(Otsuka, 121). The change of the classmates’ and school’s attitudes to them not only was an obvious representation of her but also of all Japanese children’s. In the Japanese children’s view, their classmates never expected that they will come back and that they have put them out of mind. The fach that even if the Japanese children have encountered such a hardship in their childhood, the classmates still do not show sympathy to them, makes them feel a sense of identity loss which they were already feeling to start with. They weren’t apologized and welcomed after being wrongly accused but still made the Japanese children feel interfere. The Japanese become isolated by the outside society, which causes their loss of
Almost everyone today is familiar with the dark chapter of history from 1939 to 1945, when Hitler’s army rolled across Europe, claiming the lives of millions of people, including six million Jews. However, very few people are aware of what happened to millions of people in China from 1937 to 1945. Iris Chang’s The Rape of Nanking is a landmark work because it finally reveals the least remembered and perhaps the most gruesome horrors of the Second World War: the atrocities committed by the Japanese Imperial Army on innocent Chinese civilians. Chang’s book is also important in searching for the reasons behind the Japanese barbarity.
From the Kamakura Period of the late twelfth century to the Meiji Restoration in the nineteenth century, the samurai have held prominent positions as noble warriors in Japanese society. They have come to be famous in modern, Western pop culture as the fierce, stoic guards of feudal Japan, but their practices and rituals extended beyond wielding katanas and donning impressive armor. Samurai practices were rich and complex, with strict codes, ritual suicide, and a history of influencing culture and politics (“Samurai”).
At the end of the novel, Sensei commits suicide, claiming that “the lord he was following to the grave would be the spirit of the Meiji era itself” (Soseki 232). By saying this, Sensei is connecting himself and his lifelong struggle to the very era that he lived through: a time where the modern Western ways existed in conflict with old traditional Confucian values. It makes sense that Sensei decided to end his life shortly after the Emperor’s death, as the struggle that he had gone through reflected his time, and that time was finally over. Sensei lived his life in conflict with modernization and tradition, and this resultantly caused him to take on an isolationist and misanthropic attitude. Throughout the whole novel, Sensei is conveyed as a very introspective
According to the tittle, Selling Women is a well-researched book of the Japanese women’s status in early modern Japan known as the Tokugawa period (1600-1868). Amy Stanley, a professor at Northwestern University specializing in early modern and modern Japan, provides a deep historical background of prostitution and its impacts to the economy, society, and household. The book reflects not only the role of women but also the officials, elites, brothel keepers and families in the sex trade. The author shows that the Tokugawa period determined women’s bodies as a commodity that could be sent to different areas with a high sex services demand and as an alienate property of men, both husband and father. It is common for women to stay in a transaction
found, the author writes “a melon came floating along, tsunbara, tsunbara…He was just getting ready to cut it open when he heard a crying noise, boro, boro.” The incorporation of these Japanese words strengthens the connection between the book and Japanese, even though the true essence of the culture and its values were stripped, thus perpetuating the lack of understanding of Japanese culture in America.
In 19th century Japan, an American journalist is searching for his lost love, a woman he abandoned despite his promises. His investigation leads him to a secluded island, where a prostitute informs him that his loved one is deceased. Subsequently, she begins describing the life of the girl, a dramatic story of torture and hidden secrets.
From the literature, the reader will be able to know about a variety of things, history, culture and thinking way of people at that time. In this chapter, I focus on the thinking way about the woman through an Okinawan literature Kumi odori, an especially focus on “shu-shin kaniiri” (Possessed by Love, Thwarted by the Bell) and statue of woman from it.
Perhaps upon first impression, the Bunraku-ningyo of Yaoya Oshichi may be appreciated for its aesthetic beauty or even come across as unsettling, but a trained eye can respect the workmanship placed into the doll itself. Yaoya Oshichi’s own tragic story was ripped straight from the headlines, into various forms of media, during the Edo period. After a fire burned down her home, Oshichi and her family moves into a temple where she meets and falls in love with a temple page. Not before long Oshichi and her family return to the newly built house. Wanting to be reunited with her love, she decides naively, if fire brought them together, fire can bring them together once more and commits arson. Since arson is punishable by death, a sympathetic
Geisha pass on their names to the younger generations, only with a twist. Each name in the geisha culture will show that individual’s lineage. Each of the girls that becomes a geisha will have an experienced geisha teaching them the needed social skills among other things. This training geisha also helps the geisha in training to enter a needed teahouse, or a hanamachi (Hays, 2013). This training geisha also helps to launch the younger geisha into society (Hays, 2013). Once the girl that wants to go into the geisha business starts to be trained by an experienced geisha, the girl will take a part of the geisha’s name and use it in her own artistic name. For example, a geisha that takes a part of her training geisha’s name might have a
In both The Thirteenth Night and Dancing Girl, Higuchi Ichiyo and Mori Ogai deal with the issue of “love” in the context of Meiji Japan. While commonly thought of as something personal, both texts portray “love” as being subjected to social pressures – resulting in a tension between the idealized, exalted concept of “love” and the individual’s actual experience of “love”. This tension is significant in both texts, and we see how individuals (the characters) are influenced by society’s prescriptive ideals of “love” but are often unable to achieve it in reality. It is important, however, to note the difference in viewpoint between The Thirteenth Night and Dancing Girl – the former largely depicts a poor female’s experience of “love” (or the lack thereof) while the latter presents “love” from the perspective of an elite, well-educated man.
Yei Theodora Osaki (1871-1932) translated and published the tale of patriotic hero, Momotarō, in the year 1908 in New York, U.S.A. As detailed by Yei’s biographer and lifelong friend, Mrs. Hugh Fraser, Yei was born to a Japanese father and English mother, living for extensive periods in both England and Japan. One of Yei’s motivations for writing was to disprove the misconceptions of Japan that she discovered in the ‘West’. According to Dr. Ildikó Farkas whose area of research focuses on the history and interpretation of Japanese modernism, the ‘West’ was considered to contain various nations, often depending on context, but accepted by most as to include at least part of Europe and the Americas in the twentieth century. Within her book, Japanese Fairy Tales, Osaki herself admits that the Japanese folktales contained within are not literal translations, but rather told from an angle to interest young readers of the West. I argue that Yei Theodora Osaki’s 1908 version of “Momotarō, or Story of a Son of a Peach”, a Japanese folktale, helped shape and promote the national