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The Tale of Genji Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 129 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 1,448 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
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Overview

Murasaki Shikibu's epic-length novel, The Tale of Genji, probes the psychological, romantic and political workings of mid-Heian Japan. The tale spreads across four generations, splashed with poetry and romance and heightened awareness to the fleeting quality of life.

The Law of Karma

The concept of moral causality is used to explain events of the novel. Fate is related to past lives. Good actions will be rewarded and bad actions will be punished. In this formula, there is no escaping justice. For example, Kaoru seems to be the victim of severely bad luck. He knows, though, that he surely did something to bring on this ill fortune. "His thoughts on the road were of long ago. What strange legacy had brought him and the Eighth Prince together? A bond from an earlier life, surely, had tied him to this family and its sad affairs, and made him see to...

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This section contains 1,448 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Tale of Genji Study Guide
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Epics for Students
The Tale of Genji from Epics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.