Swaddling Clothes Essay

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Yoonmee Chang is a Ph.D. candidate in English and American literature at the University of Pennsylvania. In the following essay, she discusses the gender and class oppression inherent in Mishima's romanticized desire to return to traditional Japanese social and political values in "Swaddling Clothes."

"It is neither freedom nor democracy. It is Japan."—Yukio Mishima In the minutes before his suicide, Yukio Mishima concluded his public address to the Japanese "Self Defense Force," or the Jieitai, with the following challenge, printed in the 1971 Japan Interpreter as "An Appeal": "Is it right to protect life only to let the soul die? What kind of an army is it that has no higher value than life? Right now we will showthat there is a value higher than reverence for life . . . let us rise together even now, and let us die together." The "we" that Mishima speaks of...

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This section contains 3,440 words
(approx. 9 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Swaddling Clothes Study Guide
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Swaddling Clothes from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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