Seikichi In Sunichio Tanizaki's Tattoo

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The Eccentric Personality of Seikichi, the Protagonist, in Sunichio Tanizaki’s “Tattoo” In “Tattoo” by Junichiro Tanizaki written in 1910, the story takes place in Japanese society. From the story, beauty and power cannot be separated. As a result, Tattoo which is considered to be an important tool to express the beauty for Japanese people as people tend to choose men whose bodies are beautifully tattooed to be candidates on an important day. And in the story there is one famous tattooer whose name is “Seikichi”. His art skill is as equal as many great masters. He also gains his reputation from being a painter and then becomes a talented tattoer. Although his abilities are well known among the people, his aggressiveness and obsession with…show more content…
In other words, Seikichi might be a sadist for he will be pleased after seeing other people getting physically hurt and the way that he abuses others’ mental. There are four evidences which can support the assumption that Seikichi has a sadistic personality. First, when his customers cannot endure the agony, they will emit the groans of their suffering. At this point, the more the customers groan, the more Seikichi feels strangely pleased. Furthermore, it satisfies Seikichi even more when he sees his customers lay almost death before his feet. In this situation, when we see other people almost death in front of us, it is considered to be an uncommon behavior to give them a satisfied smile as Seikichi does with his customers. Not only can the physical pain of others fulfill Seikichi’s pleasure, but also others’ mental pain. To explain, when a maiden, whom Seikichi spends five years waiting for her, comes to visit his house he mentally abuses her by showing her two terrifying pictures. The subject matters in the two pictures that Seikichi trying to show the maiden are the man who will be beheaded, the gallows, the corpses and the battlefield which are so frightening to the maiden that she says “put that pictures away” with the lips trembling and her whole body shuddering (4). Finally, instead of stop making her feel terrified, he continuously mentally abuses her by asking her not to act like a fool and begging her to stay with him a little longer. These are uncommon behavior, to show two terrifying pictures and begging her to do what you want, to act with someone whom we have spent five years waiting
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