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The Tale of Genji
     

The Tale of Genji

3.6 46
by Murasaki Shikibu
 

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Published by the female aristocrat, Murasaki Shikibu, somewhere around the year one thousand eleven. Consisting of 54 chapters, it is generally considered to be the world's first true novel, and thereby occupies a critical role in the world's literary canon. It is almost universally acknowledged that this book is the finest flower of all Japanese literature, past or

Overview

Published by the female aristocrat, Murasaki Shikibu, somewhere around the year one thousand eleven. Consisting of 54 chapters, it is generally considered to be the world's first true novel, and thereby occupies a critical role in the world's literary canon. It is almost universally acknowledged that this book is the finest flower of all Japanese literature, past or present.
The Tale of Genji offers an unparalleled glimpse into the spirit and grandeur of the Heian era of Japan, which extended from 794 AD to 1191, between the Nara and Kamakura eras. During this era of peace and economic stability, an aristocracy controlled by the Fujiwara family dominated Japan, and the nation's capital was located at Kyoto. This period was a classic age of art and literature. Japan's culture was no longer one largely borrowed from China but had become distinctively Japanese. The ruling classes lived lives of luxury and prosperity, pursuing the fine arts and music. A man was measured as much by the quality of his poetry as by the strength of his sword.

Prince Genji, the hero of this sparkling chronicle of court life, is a complex personality and a peerless lover. It is on the field of love, not on the fields of battle, that the romantic Genji excels. With consummate sensitivity, he responds differently to meet the needs of each woman he captivates. That his character has enthralled readers ever since the tale first appeared is a tribute to its author. But the novel is also unforgettable for its rich poetry, imagery, and imaginative wordplay.

Product Details

BN ID:
2940012162588
Publisher:
A.J. Publishing
Publication date:
01/01/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
850
Sales rank:
517,980
File size:
1 MB

Meet the Author

Murasaki Shikibu, was born in about 978 in Kyoto. Her real name is unknown, and it is thought she was called Murasaki after the heroine in her novel. After her husband's death in 1001, she considered devoting her life to religious service, but by 1005 she was a courtier to the empress Joto Mon'in. Murasaki charmed the court with her beautiful verses, as is evident from the diary she kept from 1007 to 1010, the main source of information about her life. The Tale of Genji was composed sometime between 1001 and 1010. The novel demonstrates Murasaki's sensitivity to human elnotions, her love of nature, and her great learning in many subjects, including Chinese. The best-known English translation of this work was made by Arthur Waley in 1935, although a more modern translation was produced by Edward Seidensticker more recently. Murasaki Shikibu's diary is also published in English. Murasaki died in Kyoto in about 1014.

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The Tale of Genji 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 46 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wish I'd realized... if you enlarge the cover it says abridged, but nowhere does the description say this. So, I've got an abridged ebook, and there are no returns on ebooks. Really annoyed.
Npb More than 1 year ago
Despite linking to this page from the unabridged Seidensticker edition, this is neither Seidensticker nor unabridged. My rating here is meaningless. It only reflects the fact that I had to give a rating to post this comment.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading this book, most of the times. It was a great read in a reality, but you really have to follow it closely. There really is no way that you can't pay attention and absorb what's being said. Every time my mind wondered away from what I was reading, I found myself at a loss of what I just read. Therefore, it was confusing at times with all the jumping around and some of the descriptions, but there was great detail that made the book well-written. I would definitely recommend this book, but only to those who are interested in history and especially Japanese history. It was an excellent insight on their culture that I enjoyed completely. I truly believed that the author, Murasaki, got her point across quite well. This story was obviously written for mainly women audiences and I believe that she achieved her purpose in doing so. She was able to get across how women lived and were treated in the eleventh century of Japan that she was living in herself. She made it clear about her place in society and what it was like, so she was able to get it across very well. She definitely accomplished her purpose in educating the reader on how life was like for women in such a time period.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Though The Tale of Genji was well-written, I personally found it a boring read. Many parts of the book are difficult to understand and I had to re-read them many times. Also, I think the book would be better suited for people more interested in history, because of its details of the eleventh century time period. I also thought that the story was more about women in the time period, and how they were treated, then about the character Genji himself. I felt like the book just seemed to run on at some points. I would not recommend this book to someone unless they have a great interest in history. However, I do think that the author got her purpose across, and the book was well-written based on the topic. The book was about life during the Imperial Court in Japan. The plot follows Genji's life, taking the reader through many of the affairs that he went through so they could get a detailed glimpse of life in this time period such as love affairs, politics, and the culture. I think that the author targeted the book at a women audience based on the many women characters seen throughout the novel and the look the author gives the reader on how they were treated.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Although it's a slow read because you have to pay close attention- every detail counts- this has to be one of the best books I've ever read. It's long, but worth every second it takes to read it. If you're interested in the Japanese culture, this is a great book. It tells a wonderful, enthralling tale that intrigues you and keeps you going- it makes you want more. If you don't get into it in the first few chapters- don't give up hope- you'd be passing by one of the greatest novels ever written. Just have some patience and stick with it. It will definitely pay off.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like this well enough but i really thought need edited.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Genji is the ultimate Prince. So much admire by everyone and so dear to many people around him. His elegance and grace surpassed anything that exist before him. Superbly written to give us a glimse into 11 century Japan Imperial Court. The Tale of Genji brings readers to a new threshold of enjoyment and fascination.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There is already an EmberClan, please change your name.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Map: "genji" res 6- main rp area <p>"genji" res 7- bios <p>Rules: no NSFW roleplaying, no mary sues, no overpowered characters, don't be a di<_>ck, post at least once every 2 days unless you say that you're going to be inactive beforehand, no drama, etc. <p>Have fun! (\_/) <b> (&bull;v&bull;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Warning! This is only volume 1 and not the whole book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
THIS IS ABRIGED! IF YOUR LIKE ME AND HHHAAATTTEEE ABRIGED BOOKS! DONT GET IT!
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