Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Paul Claudel's The East I Know (1900, 1907)

1914 translation.

Maurice Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception (1945)

Translation: Colin Smith. Publisher: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1962.

Henri Bergson's Creative Evolution (1907)

Publisher: The Modern Library, 1911. Translation: Arthur Mitchell.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Charles-Ferdinand Ramuz's The Reign of the Evil One (1917)

Anatole France's The Red Lily (1894)

Note: translated into Japanese first by Ishikawa Jun.

Mutual Aid : A Factor of Evolution (1904)

Anatole France's Penguin Island (1908)

Publisher: Wildside Press

Anatole France's Revolt of the Angels (1914)

Publisher: The Modern Library

J. Victor Koschmann's The Mito Ideology: Discourse, Reform, and Insurrection in Late Tokugawa Japan 1790-1864

Publisher: University of California Press, 1987.

Sander L. Gilman's Hysteria Beyond Freud (1993)

Publisher: University of California Press. Includes chapters by Elaine Showalter and others.

Sharon H. Nolte's Liberalism in Modern Japan: Ishibashi Tanzan and His Teachers, 1905-1960 (1987)

Andrew E. Barshay's State and Intellectual in Imperial Japan: The Public Man in Crisis (1988)

Paul A. Robinson's Freud and His Critics (1993)

Monday, February 27, 2012

George Moore's Confessions of a Young Man (1886)

Oscar Wilde: a study, from the French of André Gide (1905)

Arthur Symons' The Symbolist Movement in Literature (1899, 1919)

Publisher: New York Dutton

Gerard De Nerval's "Sylvie" (1853)

More from→English trans of Gerard De Nerval's "Sylvie" (1853), which Ishikawa draws from in his 「山桜」(1937) (現在英訳取組中).

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Hiraga Gennai zenshu (1935)

Publisher: Tokyo Hagiwara Seibun Kan

Shinko bungaku shu (1929; Kaizo)

Includes works by Yokomitsu Riichi, Kataoka Teppei, Kishida Kunio, and others.

Puroretaria bungaku shu (1931; Kaizou)

Editors: Yamamoto Sansei, Hayashi Fusao.

Akutagawa Ryunosuke Zenshu, Vol One (Iwanami; 1934)

Ota Nampo!

Full online text of Ota Nampo's (1) Kokin ikyokushu, (2) Manzai kyokashu, and (3) Toku wakago manzaishu:

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Natsume Sôseki 夏目漱石, Ten Nights of Dream (夢十夜, 1908)

Or, in PDF format...

Study Guide: Natsume Sôseki 夏目漱石, Ten Nights of Dream (夢十夜, 1908)


Note the imagery, metaphors, symbols, etc. used in the third night of dream. Refer to the definitions of the following terms while reading the text.

1. Imagery: This term is one of the most common in modern criticism, and the most ambiguous. Its applications range all the way from “the mental pictures” which are experienced by the reader of a text, to the totality of elements which make up a text. According to C. Day Lewis in Poetic Image, an image “is a picture made out of words,” and that “a poem may itself be an image composed from a multiplicity of images.

2. Image-clusters, image motifs, thematic imagery: Repeated groupings of metaphors and similes in a text to convey meaning, such as the maritime imagery in the seventh night of Ten Nights of Dream.

3. Metaphor: In a metaphor, a word which in standard usage denotes one kind of thing, quality, or action is applied to another, in the form of an identity instead of comparison. E.g. “My love is a red, red rose.” In the seventh night, “sailing” is a metaphor in that it denotes not only the action itself but some other hidden meaning about “embarking on a voyage in modernity (modern times).” Metaphors/similes in this work: red as a newt; like a mirror; Jizou stone; etc.

4. Symbols: Roughly speaking, anything that “stands for” something else is a symbol, but the process operates in many different ways. Literary symbolism is not easily decoded because it tries to be original and tends towards a rich plurality, even ambiguity, of meaning. Some of the symbols in this work: the blind boy (burden of the past, eternal reminder of past sin); the narrator (contemporary Japan, haunted by past crime); dark forest (uncertain/dark future); etc.

Note: According to kokubungaku scholars, the idea of killing a blind man, being cursed, and having one’s boy turn to a Jizō stone is borrowed from a comic play by Kawatake Mokuami and a kaidan ghost story by Tsuruya Nanboku.

5. Shōhinbun 小品文: between shōsetsu 小説 and zuihitsu 随筆; originally Ming-dynasty Chinese form characterized by informal anti-vulgar/anti-political cultivated enclosed-individualist style, popular in Britain/China/Japan in 1930s. The form incorporated elements of kikōbun, nikki, zuihitsu, and hyōron. “Belles-lettres” literary vignettes, filled with personal reminiscences; take place at Natsume home; construction of literary persona/stand-in/surrogate (as opposed to naturalists “just be me” philosophy); querulous literary persona first displayed in Bunchō (1908); Eijitsu shōhin (1909); Mankan tokorodokoro (1909, about trip to Korea/Manchurian colonies); Omoidasu koto nado (1911; diary/philosophical reflection); Garasudo no uchi (1915; 39 serialized episodes).

6. The Uncanny: Concept/feeling of profound sense of unease about self/world. Destabilized, located in in-between (i.e. dream/reality, etc). Effect usually occurs in familiar places. Uncanny: Something familiar (i.e. the blind son) has become alien to one (the narrator) through process of repression.

7. Allegory: an extended metaphor; comprised of structural (rather than textual) symbolism. In an allegory the characters/action/scenery corresponds more or less directly to certain spiritual/political/psychological struggles. Each of Souseki’s ten dreams are an allegory of modern concerns (3rd dream: reversal of child/parent roles). Narrator burdened/haunted by past crime (killing a blind man 100 yr ago). According to Seats, this is the first Japanese modern “allegorical text.” Other examples: Gulliver’s Travels, Alice in Wonderland, Kafka’s The Castle, Orwell’s 1984.

8. Foreshadowing: (今に重くなるるよ; in final scene, this actually happens).

9. Dream work: Mechanism that transforms dream’s raw material (physical stimuli, day’s residues, free associations, latent content i.e. dream thoughts) into manifest content (the censored/fragmented/impoverished/translated recounted dream). The latent content is only knowable through analysis of manifest content and patient’s free associations. Analyst’s job=literary critic’s job.

10. Modernization: characterized by industrialization, decline of agrarian society, urbanization, alienation, transformation in the family as a unit, rise of individualism. Also, the development of modern science, scientific method of investigation (observation, hypothesis, experimentation, verification), secularization, rationalization. For non-Western societies, modernization is inextricably tied in with Westernization.

11. Oedipus Complex: For Freud, the childhood desire to sleep with the mother and to kill the father. Freud describes the source of this complex in his Introductory Lectures (Twenty-First Lecture): "You all know the Greek legend of King Oedipus, who was destined by fate to kill his father and take his mother to wife, who did everything possible to escape the oracle's decree and punished himself by blinding when he learned that he had none the less unwittingly committed both these crimes" (16.330). According to Freud, Sophocles' play, Oedipus Rex, illustrates a formative stage in each individual's psychosexual development, when the young child transfers his love object from the breast (the oral phase) to the mother. At this time, the child desires the mother and resents (even secretly desires the murder) of the father. (The Oedipus complex is closely connected to the castration complex.) Such primal desires are, of course, quickly repressed but, even among the mentally sane, they will arise again in dreams or in literature. Among those individuals who do not progress properly into the genital phase, the Oedipus Complex, according to Freud, can still be playing out its psychdrama in various displaced, abnormal, and/or exaggerated ways. (Purdue University Introductory Guide to Critical Theory)

1. M.H. Abrams. A Glossary of Literary Terms, Fourth Edition. New York: Holt,
Rinehart and Winston, (1941), 1981.
2. David Lodge. The Art of Fiction. London: Penguin Books, 1992.
3. M.H. Abrams, The Mirror and the Lamp: Romantic: Theory and Critical Tradition
(New York: The Norton Library, W.W. Norton and Co., 1958). Four elements basic to the total situation of art: (1) the artist, (2) the work itself (formal aspects), (3) the world the work creates or reveals, (4) the audience the work affects.

Particularities of Culture

1. “fifth year of Bunka”: 1808, beginning of the end bakufu, foreign threats
2. Higakubo日ヶ窪: district in present day Azabu, Minato-ku.
3. Hottawara 堀田原: old name for a district in Asakusa.
4. Jizō地蔵: guardian of abandoned/orphaned children.

Study Questions

Answer all of the following questions.

1. Identify the imagery in the third night. What kind of imagery is used in the text? What kind of atmosphere does the imagery create?

2. Are the images linked or related in a certain way? Do they form an image cluster to suggest a particular atmosphere?

3. Note the narrator and the narrative voice. From whose perspective do we perceive events

 in the story? Do we ever go beyond that perspective? What is the effect of the controlling 

narrative  perspective? Bear in mind this narrative perspective and contrast it with other 

stories in the course.

4. Why ghost stories in an age of rapid modernization (or what was called the age of

 “civilization and enlightenment” 文明開化)?

5. Describe the personality and behavior of the blind boy. What does he stand for? Examine 

the boy as a literary symbol.

6. Should we read these episodes as fiction or actual dreams? (Critic Sasabuchi argues that only Dream #3 is based on an actual dream, and that we should read these as creative fiction, and not clinical documents.) What do you think?

7. How is this story an inversion of the Oedipus complex?

8. Interpret the story as an historical allegory. What does the boy symbolize? What does the narrator symbolize? How do they relate to each other symbolically?