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Poetry's Role In The Heian Period Essay

Project id 1000999
Subject area Self Improvement
Document type Essay
Words 1530
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In the background of Japanese poetry and early literature, the Heian period(794-1185) has been one of the most significant phases for poetry that was Japanese, as well as the beginnings of ancient Japanese literature. Prior to this movement, the majority of poems written in Japan were composed not in Japanese(as there was no completely Japanese writing system), however in ancient Chinese or kanji(Chinese characters). This fact led to criticism from Chinese artists, and so the Japanese sought to find a means to make a type of poetry which has been uniquely theirs, starting with creating new alphabets. These alphabets were Person'yōgana, a method made for transcribing the Japanese language with Chinese characters(both phonetic-based and meaning-based), where the alphabet of katakana derived, and hiragana, which was created by women from the writing form of onnade, and was known as uniquely Japanese. These newly created alphabets helped the world distinguish between Japanese Chinese and literary poetry, but although these alphabets were an important factor, they were not the final step in the process. After the invention of those early types of Japanese writing, the last step was for the Japanese people to make a differentiation between their poetry and classical Chinese poetry. Now that the Japanese had their own special writing systems, novels and anthologies of poetry were written. The two most famous anthologies of poetry in early Japan were the Individual'yōshū and the Kokinwakashū(Kokinshū for short). The Individual'yōshū is your earliest written anthology of ancient Japan and the largest and oldest surviving anthology of Japanese lyric poetry considered to have been organized around the 750s. Even though the compilers are mostly unknown, it is believed t.. .

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