The Columbia Anthology of Modern Japanese Literature, Volume 1: From Restoration to Occupation, 1868-1945

The Columbia Anthology of Modern Japanese Literature, Volume 1: From Restoration to Occupation, 1868-1945

J. Thomas Rimer, Van C. Gessel


This accomplished anthology collects works of fiction, poetry, drama, and essay-writing from a pivotal time in jap background. as well as their literary achievements, the texts mirror the political, social, and highbrow adjustments that happened in eastern society in this interval, together with publicity to Western principles and literature, the increase of nationalism, and the complicated interplay of conventional and glossy forces. the quantity offers amazing, frequently new translations of vintage texts by means of such celebrated writers as Nagai Kafu, Shimazaki Toson, Natsume Soseki, Kawabata Yasunari, and Yosano Akiko. The editors have additionally unearthed works from lesser-known girls writers, lots of that have by no means been to be had in English.

Organized chronologically and via style inside each one interval, the quantity finds the key affects within the improvement of contemporary jap literature: the japanese classics themselves, the instance of chinese language poetry, and the come upon with Western literature and tradition. smooth jap writers reread the classics of jap literature, infused them with modern language, and refashioned them with an elevated emphasis on mental components. in addition they reinterpreted older aesthetic strategies in gentle of twentieth-century mentalities. whereas glossy principles captured the mind's eye of a few eastern writers, the instance of classical chinese language poetry remained vital for others. Meiji writers endured to compose poetry in classical chinese language and cling to a Confucian method of inspiration. one other consider shaping smooth eastern literature used to be the instance of international works, which provided new literary thought and possibilities for jap readers and writers.

Divided into 4 chapters, the anthology starts with the early smooth texts of the 1870s, keeps with works written through the years of social swap previous international warfare I and the cutting edge writing of the interwar interval, and concludes with texts from international conflict II. every one bankruptcy features a priceless severe advent, situating the works inside their literary, political, and cultural contexts. also, there are biographical introductions for every writer.

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