The World of the Shining Prince: Court Life in Ancient Japan

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Kodansha International, 1994 - History - 336 pages
15 Reviews
The World of the Shining Prince, Ivan Morris's widely acclaimed portrait of the ceremonious, inbred, melancholy world of ancient Japan, has been a standard in cultural studies for nearly thirty years. Using as a frame of reference The Tale of Genji and other major literary works from Japan's Heian period, Morris recreates an era when woman set the cultural tone. Focusing on the world of the emperor's court-the world so admired by Virginia Woolf and others-he describes the politics, society, religious life, and superstitions of the times, providing detailed portrayals of the daily life of courtiers, the cult of beauty they espoused, and the intricate relations between the men and women of this milieu.

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Review: The World of the Shining Prince: Court Life in Ancient Japan

User Review  - Kila - Goodreads

Read this for research purposes - skim read some parts due to having not read The Tale of Genji yet. Read full review

Review: The World of the Shining Prince: Court Life in Ancient Japan

User Review  - Mary Catelli - Goodreads

The "Shining Prince" of the title is in fact a fictional character -- Prince Genji of the Tale of Genji -- because this might also be subtitled the setting of that novel, written by a court lady in ... Read full review

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About the author (1994)


IVAN MORRIS wrote widely on Japan's ancient culture and modern politics, and translated many works from classical and contemporary literature. His books include The Mobility of Failure and translations of Mishima's Temple of the Golden Pavilion and The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon. He died in 1976.

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