Доклад/Баяндама: Yosano Akiko in Modern Japanese Poets and the Nature of Literature


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Английский язык
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Доклад/Баяндама
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23

... Despite some older critics' detractions, it proved to have an irresistible appeal for the younger generation. As time gradually eroded the remnants of feudalism in Japanese society, Akiko's tanka and free verse came to seem prophetic of a bright new era soon to come, and before long she was a "queen" reigning over a countless number of young poets. Spurred on by their expectations, she continued to write innovative verse. In all, she produced 23 volumes of tanka and one volume of shi, and both in quality and in quantity her poetry represents one of the highest literary achievements of her generation.

 

As a poet, Akiko was far more interested in self-expression than in "sketches from nature." She prized human passions and wanted to express them freely, unrestricted by the decorum of contemporary society. The dominant theme of her poetry was romantic love, among the strongest of emotions. Unlike Shiki's oeuvre, which includes few love poems, her books of poetry are filled with pieces expressing her feelings toward her beloved. Her celebrated love affair with Yosano Hiroshi (1873-1935), initially her tanka teacher and later her husband, supplied her with a rich source of inspiration for verse writing early in her career. After she married him, her struggles as a housewife and mother (she raised eleven children) stimulated, rather than stifled, her creative urge. They also led her to write a considerable number of essays calling for the improvement of women's status in society; some of her arguments anticipated the women's rights movements of the 1970's. Her social criticism, contained in both poetry and prose, was consistently humanistic. Whereas Shiki worried about the future of Japan as a modern state and tacitly supported her imperialistic policies, Akiko, seldom blinded by the fervent patriotism of her fellow countrymen, was far more concerned with the individual man and his welfare. One who reads the collected works of both Shiki and Akiko is astonished to discover how modern the latter was in her thought and sensibility, even though in age the two poets were only eleven years apart. Japanese poetry made a significant leap forward with the work of this remarkable poetess. ...