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The Tale of Genji Essay | Critical Essay #2

This Study Guide consists of approximately 172 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Tale of Genji.
This section contains 930 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay #2

In this essay, the author illustrates how

The Tale of Genji was the birth of the modern novel.

1001-19

The modern novel was born at the imperial court of Japan.

Almost exactly 1,000 years ago, a young woman in a small town in Japan began to write the story of an imagined prince who had just about everything—brains, looks, charm, artistic talent and the love of well- born ladies. He was Genji, "the shining one", so dear to his father, the emperor, that the latter reduced his rank to that of a commoner, to spare him the malice at court.

Born in the first chapter of The Tale of Genji, the prince reinvents himself as the most powerful commoner in the kingdom. When last seen, by now aged 52, he is planning to seclude himself in a mountain temple. Further chapters concern his supposed son Kaoru, troubled to find...

(read more from the Critical Essay #2 section)

This section contains 930 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Tale of Genji Study Guide
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The Tale of Genji from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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