Literary Precedents for Shogun

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Historical fiction became popular in the early nineteenth century when Sir Walter Scott wrote Waverly, in 1814. Scott's novel attempts to interest readers in history by showing how historical events affect private lives and individuals. Another great work of this genre is Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace, which was written in the mid-nineteenth century about Russian experiences in the war with Napoleon. First published in 1719, Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe follows its hero as he confronts other cultures and uses his technical abilities in ways remarkably similar to John Blackthorne.

Clavell's Toranaga is based on Tokugawa leyasu, whose final victory in 1600 established the Tokugawa Shogunate as ruler of Japan for 250 years. In 1988, Conrad Totman published a biography of this historical figure, Tokugawa leyasu: Shogun. Although written by a Westerner, the work is considered an honest treatment of one of the great leaders in Japanese history.

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This section contains 147 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Shogun Study Guide
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Shogun from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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