The Sarashina Diary

The Sarashina Diary

A Woman's Life in Eleventh-century Japan

eBook - 2014
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A thousand years ago, a young Japanese girl embarked on a journey from the wild East Country to the capital. She began a diary that she would continue to write for the next forty years and compile later in life, bringing lasting prestige to her family. Some aspects of the author's life and text seem curiously modern. She married late and identified more as a writer than as a wife and mother. Enthralled by romantic fiction, she wrote extensively about the disillusioning blows that reality can deal to fantasy. The Sarashina Diary is a portrait of the writer as reader and a tribute to the ... .
Publisher: New York : Columbia University Press, [2014]
Copyright Date: ©2014
Characteristics: 1 online resource (xvi, 239 pages) : illustrations.
Additional Contributors: Itō, Moriyuki 1954-
Arntzen, Sonja 1945-

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reginamia Sep 28, 2015

this translation is the result of a collaboration that took fifteen years to complete. Two scholars of Japanese literature, one a native English speaker, the other a native Japanese speaker did far more than merely translate words.
They transported across time the subtleties of Heian Court as expressed by a gifted woman. They remained true to artistry that was expected 1000 years ago; as in Japanese art, spaces, or silences, were an integral part of creative writing. One might express one feeling but then shift tone or change topic, leaving the reader to fill in the blanks. The translators spent decades getting to know the mind and person behind the Sarashina Diaries, her voice, her way with words, so that even in the poetic passages they remain true to her spirit.

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