The Tale of Genji By Murasaki Shikibu (Summary, Book Review, Online Reading, PDF, Download)

    Abdulaziz Sobh

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    Author Murasaki Shikibu
    Original title 源氏物語
    Genji Monogatari
    Translator Suematsu KenchōArthur WaleyEdward G. SeidenstickerHelen McCulloughRoyall TylerDennis Washburn
    Country Japan
    Language Early Middle Japanese
    Genre Monogatari
    Published Before 1021
    Media type manuscript
    895.63 M93

    Summary: The Tale of Genji (源氏物語 Genji Monogatari) is a classic of Japanese literature written by noblewoman and bridesmaid Murasaki Shikibu in the early years of the eleventh century. The original manuscript no longer exists. It was done in "concertina" or "orihon" style: several sheets of paper stuck together and folded alternately in one direction and then in the other, around the peak of the Heian period. The work is a unique representation of the lifestyles of the high court during the Heian period, written in an archaic language and a confusing and poetic style that makes it unreadable for the average Japanese without a dedicated study. It was not until the early 20th century that Genji was translated into modern Japanese, by the poet Akiko Yosano. The first English translation was attempted in 1882, but it was of poor quality and incomplete.The work recounts the life of Hikaru Genji, or "Shining Genji", the son of a former Japanese emperor, known to readers as Emperor Kiritsubo, and a low-ranking concubine named Lady Kiritsubo. For political reasons, the emperor eliminates Genji from the line of succession, degrading him to a commoner by giving him the surname Minamoto, and pursuing a career as an imperial officer. The story focuses on Genji's romantic life and describes the customs of the aristocratic society of the time. Sometimes it is called the first novel in the world, the first modern novel, the first psychological novel or the first novel that is still considered a classic. Although it is considered a masterpiece, its precise classification and influence in the Western and Eastern canons have been the subject of debate. The Tale of Genji is a classic work of Japanese literature attributed to the Japanese nobility Murasaki Shikibu in the early eleventh century, around the peak of the Heian Period. Sometimes it is called the first novel in the world, the first modern novel, the first psychological novel or the first novel that is still considered a classic, although this topic is a subject of debate. The story of Genji was written in the 11th century by Murasaki. Shikibu, a lady from the Heian court. It is universally recognized as the greatest masterpiece of narrative in Japanese prose, perhaps the first true novel in the history of the world. So far there has been no complete and scrupulously faithful translation of the original text. The masterful interpretation of Edward G. Seidensticker was first published in two volumes in 1976 and was immediately hailed as a classic of the art translator. Here it is presented in an entire volume, illustrated through woodcuts taken from a 1650 Japanese edition of The Tale of Genji.

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    About the Author:
    Murasaki Shikibu, a lady of the court of Japan, is best known as the author of The Tale of Genji, written in the eleventh century and universally recognized as the greatest masterpiece of narrative in Japanese prose and possibly the oldest true novel in Japan. the history. of the world.