A poetics of courtly male friendship in Heian Japan

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University of Hawaiʻi Press, 2007 - Literary Criticism - 219 pages
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Western scholars have tended to read Heian literature through the prism of female experience, stressing the imbalance of power in courtship and looking for evidence that women hoped to move beyond the constraints of marriage politics. Paul Schalow's original and challenging work inherits these concerns about the transcendence of love and carries them into a new realm of inquiry--the suffering of noblemen and the literary record of their hopes for transcendence through friendship. He traces this recurring theme, which he labels "courtly male friendship," in five important literary works ranging from the tenth-century

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Paradigms of Friendship in the Tale oflse
Poetic Sequences in the Kagero Diary
Two Cranes Flying Wing to Wing

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About the author (2007)

Paul Gordon Schalow is Associate Professor of Japanese Literature at Rutgers University. He is the translator of Ihara Saikaku's The Great Mirror of Male Love (Stanford, 1990). Janet A. Walker is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature at Rutgers University. She is the author of The Japanese Novel of the Meiji Period and the Ideal of Individualism.

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