The Tale of Genji Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Describe Genji's view on women.

Genji is the classic definition of a womanizer. He admires their beauty, but he feels that no woman could possess all desirable qualities. He decides that it would be best to be with as many women as possible. In this way Genji devalues women.

2. What were the terms of Genji's birth?

Genji was born the son of an Emperor, but his mother was of lower birth. The Emperor wished to protect Genji, so he deemed Genji a commoner.

3. Who is Utsusemi and how does Genji first come into contact with her?

Genji is quite taken with Utsusemi and wishes to sleep with her, but she rejects him. Genji allows Utsusemi's brother to arrange a private meeting between he and Utsusemi. He finds himself again in her room, but he slips into bed with the wrong woman.

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