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Dr. Martha Selby, Chair 120 INNER CAMPUS DR STOP G9300 WCH 4.134 78712-1251 • 512-471-5811

Spring 2008

ANS 320 • Japanese Tales and Songs: PreModern Narrative and Lyric

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
31085 MWF
11:00 AM-12:00 PM
NOA 1.116
Khan, R.

Course Description

Premodern Japan boasted a corpus of hundreds of novels, but only a handful survive, although major rediscoveries have been made recently. At the other end of the literary scale, Japan is known for its vast corpus of extremely short lyric poems. These two forms, narrative and lyric, come together in anthologies that weave numerous poems old and new into story-like sequences, in hybrid poem-prose genres, and in anthologies of poems from the great lost novels. This course will span the length of premodern Japanese literature, exploring recent discoveries and new research in this field, to reveal a rich interplay of forms. These works also have important resonances in other cultures as well as Japan, both ancient and modern, and address an astonishing range of important cultural themes, from politics and sport, to love, nature, and the environment. All texts will be studied in translation.

Grading Policy

Two papers (4-5 pp.) 15% each In-Class Assignments 30% Final Project 20% Attendance and Participation 20%


Carter tr., Traditional Japanese Poetry Whitehouse, tr. The Tale of the Lady Ochikubo [excerpts] Rodd, tr. Kokinshû: A Collection of Poems Ancient and Modern McCullough, ed. & tr. Classical Japanese Prose McKinney, tr. The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon McCullough, ed. & tr. Genji and Heike Khan, ed. & tr. Parting at Dawn [excerpts] Khan, ed. & tr. Fûyôshû: A Collection of Poetic Leaves in the Wind [excerpts] Keene, tr., Essays in Idleness: The Tsurezuregusa of Kenkô Yuasa, tr., Bashô's Narrow Road to the Far North Chambers, tr., Akinari's Tales of Moonlight and Rain


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