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Light Verse from the Floating World: An Anthology of Premodern Japanese Senryu

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Similar in form to the well-known, more serious haiku, the satirical — and often humorous — poems known as senryu have received little scholarly attention because most were written by anonymous amateur poets and were therefore considered popular literature unworthy of serious study. Senryu are interesting, however, precisely because they reflect the thoughts and feelings of ordinary townspeople in a way that other more orthodox types of Japanese literature do not. In his introduction on the nature and historical background of the form, Makoto Ueda explores the elements of humor and satire contained in senryu, highlighting the mores that lie behind the laughter the poems evince.

Collecting 400 eighteenth- and nineteenth-century poems — with the romanized Japanese verse presented at the bottom of each page — Light Verse from the Floating World is divided into thematic sections, each preceded by a short introduction:

- satirical senryu, aimed at people of the ruling warrior class and civilians of various professions;

- senryu on human relationships — between young lovers, husband and wife, parent and child, or family members of different generations;

- poems on townspeople enjoying themselves in the amusement district;

- ridicule of well-known historical figures;

- and poems on the poets' general outlook on life.

Replete with keen observations on the human world rather than the natural one, this first comprehensive anthology in English translation of this major genre of Japanese literature will appeal to scholars and students of Japanese culture, as well as general readers of poetry.

Synopsis:

Similar in form to the well-known, more serious haiku, the satirical — and often humorous — poems known as senryu have received little scholarly attention because most were written by anonymous amateur poets and were therefore considered popular literature unworthy of serious study. Senryu are interesting, however, precisely because they reflect the thoughts and feelings of ordinary townspeople in a way that other more orthodox types of Japanese literature do not. In his introduction on the nature and historical background of the form, Makoto Ueda explores the elements of humor and satire contained in senryu, highlighting the mores that lie behind the laughter the poems evince.

Collecting 400 eighteenth- and nineteenth-century poems — with the romanized Japanese verse presented at the bottom of each page — Light Verse from the Floating World is divided into thematic sections, each preceded by a short introduction:

- satirical senryu, aimed at people of the ruling warrior class and civilians of various professions;

- senryu on human relationships — between young lovers, husband and wife, parent and child, or family members of different generations;

- poems on townspeople enjoying themselves in the amusement district;

- ridicule of well-known historical figures;

- and poems on the poets' general outlook on life.

Replete with keen observations on the human world rather than the natural one, this first comprehensive anthology in English translation of this major genre of Japanese literature will appeal to scholars and students of Japanese culture, as well as general readers of poetry.

Synopsis:

Previously neglected by scholars as "popular literature," the study of senryu--a 17-syllable verse form--provides valuable insight into the thoughts and feelings of ordinary Japanese townspeople. This collection of 400 humorous and often satirical poems written during the late 18th and early 19th century provides a rich sampling of the senryu form and its prevailing themes. Ueda outlines the history and nature of senryo in an introduction, and provides further readings in a bibliography.

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. [271]-273).

Product Details

ISBN:
9780231115513
Author:
Ueda, Makoto
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Location:
New York, N.Y. :
Subject:
Anthologies (multiple authors)
Subject:
Asian - General
Subject:
Translations into english
Subject:
Japanese poetry
Subject:
Senryu
Subject:
Senryu - Translations into English
Subject:
Poetry -Anthologies
Edition Description:
Includes bibliographical references.
Publication Date:
19991031
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.96x4.99x.74 in. .70 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » Poetry
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » Anthologies
Fiction and Poetry » Poetry » Haiku and Tanka
Religion » Eastern Religions » Japanese Religion and Literature

Light Verse from the Floating World: An Anthology of Premodern Japanese Senryu New Trade Paper
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Product details 288 pages Columbia University Press - English 9780231115513 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Similar in form to the well-known, more serious haiku, the satirical — and often humorous — poems known as senryu have received little scholarly attention because most were written by anonymous amateur poets and were therefore considered popular literature unworthy of serious study. Senryu are interesting, however, precisely because they reflect the thoughts and feelings of ordinary townspeople in a way that other more orthodox types of Japanese literature do not. In his introduction on the nature and historical background of the form, Makoto Ueda explores the elements of humor and satire contained in senryu, highlighting the mores that lie behind the laughter the poems evince.

Collecting 400 eighteenth- and nineteenth-century poems — with the romanized Japanese verse presented at the bottom of each page — Light Verse from the Floating World is divided into thematic sections, each preceded by a short introduction:

- satirical senryu, aimed at people of the ruling warrior class and civilians of various professions;

- senryu on human relationships — between young lovers, husband and wife, parent and child, or family members of different generations;

- poems on townspeople enjoying themselves in the amusement district;

- ridicule of well-known historical figures;

- and poems on the poets' general outlook on life.

Replete with keen observations on the human world rather than the natural one, this first comprehensive anthology in English translation of this major genre of Japanese literature will appeal to scholars and students of Japanese culture, as well as general readers of poetry.

"Synopsis" by , Previously neglected by scholars as "popular literature," the study of senryu--a 17-syllable verse form--provides valuable insight into the thoughts and feelings of ordinary Japanese townspeople. This collection of 400 humorous and often satirical poems written during the late 18th and early 19th century provides a rich sampling of the senryu form and its prevailing themes. Ueda outlines the history and nature of senryo in an introduction, and provides further readings in a bibliography.
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