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Murasaki Shikibu
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Table of Contents

Preface; Genji chapter titles; Genealogical chart; Part I. The Cultural Background: 1. Politics; 2. Murasaki Shikibu; 3. Religion; 4. Language; 5. A grammar of sexual relations; 6. History and fiction; Part II. The Tale of Genji: 7. Sexual politics (chapters 1-12); 8. Penance and restitution (chapters 12-21); 9. A prospect of flowers (chapters 22-33); 10. Dangerous obsessions (chapters 34-41); 11. A passion for self-destruction (chapters 42-54); Part III. Language and style: 12. The narrator's presence; 13. Kashiwagi's tortured mind; 14. Equivocal narration; 15. Poetry in prose; 16. Translations; Part IV. Impact, Influence and Reception: 17. Early textual history; 18. Murasaki in hell; 19. Medieval commentaries; 20. Tokugawa readings; 21. Modern readings; Guide to further reading.

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This introduction to The Tale of Genji sketches the text's cultural background and offers an analysis of the text's language.

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'... an erudite commentary encouraging the reader to investigate one of the most important Japanese texts by exploring a plethora of ideas in a guided but open manner.' Forum for Modern Language Studies

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