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Tales of Moonlight and Rain,9780231139137

Tales of Moonlight and Rain

by
Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 1/1/2009
Publisher(s): Ingram Publisher Services, Inc.

Summary

First published in 1776, the nine gothic tales in this collection are Japan's finest and most celebrated examples of the literature of the occult. They subtly merge the world of reason with the realm of the uncanny and exemplify the period's fascination with the strange and the grotesque. They were also the inspiration for Mizoguchi Kenji's brilliant 1953 film Ugetsu.The title Ugetsu monogatari(literally "rain-moon tales") alludes to the belief that mysterious beings appear on cloudy, rainy nights and in mornings with a lingering moon. In "Shiramine," the vengeful ghost of the former emperor Sutoku reassumes the role of king; in "The Chrysanthemum Vow," a faithful revenant fulfills a promise; "The Kibitsu Cauldron" tells a tale of spirit possession; and in "The Carp of My Dreams," a man straddles the boundaries between human and animal and between the waking world and the world of dreams. The remaining stories feature demons, fiends, goblins, strange dreams, and other manifestations beyond all logic and common sense.The eerie beauty of this masterpiece owes to Akinari's masterful combination of words and phrases from Japanese classics with creatures from Chinese and Japanese fiction and lore. Along with The Tale of Genjiand The Tales of the Heike, Tales of Moonlight and Rainhas become a timeless work of great significance. This new translation, by a noted translator and scholar, skillfully maintains the allure and complexity of Akinari's original prose.

Author Biography

Anthony H. Chambers is professor of Japanese literature and literary translation at Arizona State University

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. 1
The Early Modern Period in Japanp. 2
About the Authorp. 3
Bunjin, National Learning, and Yomihonp. 8
About Tales of Moonlight and Rainp. 11
About the Translationp. 34
Tales of Moonlight and Rainp. 45
Prefacep. 47
Shiraminep. 51
The Chrysanthemum Vowp. 75
The Reed-Choked Housep. 91
The Carp of My Dreamsp. 110
The Owl of the Three Jewelsp. 121
The Kibitsu Cauldronp. 139
A Serpent's Lustp. 155
The Blue Hoodp. 186
On Poverty and Wealthp. 202
Bibliographyp. 221
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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