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Writer on Historical Japanese Poetry

Project id 1004569
Subject area Other
Document type Essay
Words 2083
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While studying early Japanese literature, it is apparent that poetry embedded inside the prose is a considerable part of the overall experience of their storylines. There are times where, in the case of Ise Monogatari, it is apparent that the story, written in prose, is not the most important focus of this entrance. The poetry is a fragile type of self-expression which was the sole form of expression in the time prior to fiction and journal entries. "The seeds of Western verse lie in the individual heart and develop into leaves of ten thousand words. Many things occur to the people of the globe, and they all believe and believe is given expression in description of things they see and hear. [] It is poetry which, without effort, moves heaven and earth, stirs the emotions of the invisible gods and spirits, smooths the relations of men and women, and calms the hearts of fierce warriors" (Rodd 35) The "leaves of ten thousand words" is with regard to the literal meaning of "Man'yōshū", a very famous, big compilation of Japanese poems that has influenced many things following it. The Individual'yōshū is the earliest collection of Japanese waka known to the world containing over 2,500 waka. Man'yōshū introduced its own form of writing, Person'yōgana, that was the stepping stone to its Japanese writing system to progress into using kana. Until this time, Chinese kanji were only used for their significance, but Individual'yōgana permitted for kanji to be used phonetically and semantically. This radical shift in the writing system helped proceed Japan forward in its own creative texts away from Chinese influence. Contrary to English, the Japanese language uses a phonetic system, so in tanka and waka, where you will find syllabic constraints, space must be utilized as sensibly as possi...

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