Introduction to Japanese Literature JAPN0083
Dr. Williams Crawford
The Tale of Genji is seen as the first psychological novel that was written by Murasaki Shikibu. It records the story of Prince Hikaru Genji and his experiences of having affairs with numerous numbers of women that he fell in love with. Prince Hikaru Genji is also being called “the shining genji”. He is the son of an ancient Japanese emperor---Emperor Kiritsubo.
Genji’s altitude towards women seems crucial at my viewpoint. Although his performance with women portraits him into a lady-killer. However from my viewpoint, he is consistently looking for an ideal woman that he ...view middle of the document...
"He came late at night when everyone was asleep , she was frightened" (p.41)
These kinds of behavior have become a pattern between the sexual relations with women. To me, he sees women in the way as they were toys that he could play with and use to fulfill his desire in both physical and mental aspects. Genji at one point mentioned his preferences of the ideal women: “They conclude that the perfect woman should be loyal and cultured, but passive and willing to feign ignorance to flatter her suitor.” (Chapter 2,line 4) He demanded women to be loyal however he could still be spontaneous and irresponsible himself.
Genji’s altitude of the relationship between women and men are uncommon and dispraised compare to one fiction named “The Butterfly Lovers” in China. “The Butterfly Lovers” is a legend between Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai in Eastern Jin Dynasty. This story narrated the spirit of loyalty between two lovers.
“They are devoted to and passionate about each other and they make a vow of "till death do us part". The joy of their reunion is short-lived...