HIKAKU BUNGAKU Journal of Comparative Literature
Online ISSN : 2189-6844
Print ISSN : 0440-8039
ISSN-L : 0440-8039
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  • , with Reference to Vernon Lee's Aesthetics and Literary Theory
    KIDOURA Toyokazu
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 7-21
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     This paper seeks to clarify the premises underlying Natsume Soseki's philosophy of literature through a contrast with the aesthetics and literary theory of the critic and novelist Vernon Lee (1856‒1935). In his 1907 work Bungaku-ron (Theory of Literature), Soseki refers to Lee's essay on aesthetics entitled ‘Recent Aesthetics' (1904). The theories elaborated in the two texts share several points in common. Both emphasise how the projection of inner experience onto the outer world functions as a mechanism of human cognition. Additionally, both theories also hold that it is through this function of projection that metaphor and other forms of literary and linguistic expression are established. Lee, in particular, referred to the function of projection as ‘Empathy', becoming the earliest critic to elaborate an aesthetics of empathy in the English-speaking world. Moreover, in that they both sought to build a literary theory focused on readers' emotions and feelings, these authors were arguably engaging with a similar challenge. Lee, in his treatise on literary theory, The Handling of Words (1923), stresses ‘the Writer's point of view,' emphasising a one-way influence of authorial expression onto readers' emotions. In contrast, Soseki's theory treats the authorial act of expression as being equal to the arousal of emotion in the reader. What this paper reveals, then, is that in contrast with Lee's theory, Soseki's philosophy of literature emphasised the individual and specific emotional reactions of the reader; it was an attempt to understand literature holistically as a phenomenon characterized by a mutual engagement between authors and readers.

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  • : The Middle-Earth, England, and Japan
    KAWANO Megumi
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 22-36
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     The Japanese translation of The Lord of the Rings by Seta Teiji is criticized to be too ‘Japanesque' and incoherent as to his choice of word used to translate the place-names in the text. He has translated some place-names by sense, but others phonetically. However, this incoherence and Japanization is deliberate.

     Tolkien, the author of The Lord of the Rings, has set a strict rule about nomenclature in the text. He has used multiple languages to name places in the Middle-earth, his invented world. This multilingualism shows the variety of peoples living in the world. He has written a guide to the names in this novel for the use of translators of this novel and has said in it that names consisted of present-day English vocabulary should be translated into the language of translation according to their meaning and the others should be left unchanged.

     The apparent incoherency of Seta's translation has come from his following this rule. In addition, he has distinguished names to be translated word-forword from names to be modified to give them an appearance of actual Japanese names. He has translated nonliterally the tongue of Hobbits, through whose eyes the events are reported, thus making readers feel that they are familiar, while Common Speech has been translated literally.

     Though Hobbiton in the Middle-earth can be identified with England, Tolkien gives greater importance to the universality of his imaginary world than to the Englishness of it. Seta's Japanization of the world is a response to Tolkien's choice.

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  • : Narrative and Bamboozlement in Life of Pi
    KASE Kayoko
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 37-51
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     This paper argues that Yann Martel's novel Life of Pi ascribes to India a spiritual paradigm formed in the colonial period and that the story renovates the aging paradigm for contemporary use.

     More than a few researchers have examined Life of Pi, some of whom focus on religious beliefs. In common, they all regard the novel as postmodern literature that seeks to deconstruct religious beliefs and replace God with a narrative. Therefore, they make a judgment about whether it can be “a story that makes you believe in God," as Martel writes in the novel's Author's Note. Though the story is based on India, and Pi, the protagonist, is an Indian, previous researchers have examined the novel's religious concepts within a Christian framework.

     This paper employs Homi K. Bhabha's view to discuss the relation between religious beliefs and narrative. Borrowing from Bhabha's concept, Martel found both religious “rapture" and the way of “negotiation" in India, and then, in Life of Pi, he utilized the latter to transmit the former. Nevertheless, this comes from his desire to present India as a spiritual paradigm. Not only does Martel rely on the paradigm but also adapts it by using its narrative, which he calls “bamboozlement." Besides, he attenuates native traits of Pondicherry. Pi is pan-Indianized and adapted to contemporary Western society.

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  • : Kunio Yanagita's Study of Dialect and Its Influence on Zhou Zuoren
    WANG Lan
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 52-65
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     The present thesis examines the influence of the dialect research work by Kunio Yanagita on Zhou Zuoren and the difference between their views regarding the effect of dialect in shaping national consciousness.

     Inspired by Kunio Yanagita, Zhou Zuoren became active in dialect research. In his book, On Snails, Yanagita demonstrated that many animals and plants received their trivial names from children. He also analyzed the life and feeling of ordinary people associated with the dialect's use. Yanagita's work greatly influenced Zhou. He not only criticized the neglect of the study of trivial names in the field of traditional Chinese natural history but also wrote a well-known prose work named The Trivial Name of Wild Grasses.

     Yanagita appreciated people's ability to use language in their beautiful, popular names; he believed that if people could use their own languages to fully express their ideas, they would not be easily fooled by abstract and empty slogans of politicians and would become citizens with sound mind and wisdom. This belief informed his academic study that bore an emphatic ideology of social practice. In contrast, Zhou's research was limited to the criticism of traditional Chinese culture and remained within academic circles. This difference may indicate a presence of optimism among Japanese intellectuals in the Meiji period and pessimism dominating modern Chinese intellectuals who bore a heavy burden of history.

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  • L'analyse de L'Âme des choses d'Hector Chainaye.
    MITA Jun
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 66-81
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     Cette étude s'intéresse à la réception du Symbolisme en Wallonie et à la variante régionaliste qui s'y est développée. Le Symbolisme est l'un des mouvements artistiques qui a rencontré en Belgique le plus de succès en tant qu'emblème d'une identité « belge » définie comme le résultat d'une hybridation des cultures latine et germanique. Pourtant, Albert Mockel, l'initiateur wallon de cette esthétique d'origine française, est également impliqué dans le régionalisme wallon, qui s'oppose à cette conception.

     Certes, à partir des années 1890, la revue la Wallonie (1886-1892) dirigée par Mockel commence à perdre le rôle moteur qu'elle jouait jusque-là dans le champ littéraire en Belgique. Le symbolisme belge connaît alors un succès international grâce à l'exotisme « nordique/germanique » que l'on trouve chez les écrivains flamands d'expression française à Bruxelles. Néanmoins, ce passage d'un modèle à l'autre est révélateur du processus qui a engendré le « symbolisme wallon », également issu de la culture nordique/germanique. Mon propos s'appuie principalement sur l'analyse des oeuvres d'un écrivain symboliste wallon méconnu, Hector Chainaye (1865-1913), pour montrer comment son esthétique animiste a pu favoriser l'émergence du symbolisme de type nordique, sans tomber pour autant dans le régionalisme folklorique qui a fait plus tard le succès du « Symbolisme » dans le champ littéraire parisien. De plus, l'esthétique de Chainaye, résumée par la formule « l'âme des choses », entretient des similitudes étroites avec la série de dessins du même nom dus à l'artiste symboliste belge, Xavier Mellery, bien que l'on ignore si tous deux se sont rencontrés.

     L'esthétique du « symbolisme wallon » fut en fait léguée au « symbolisme belge » autour de Bruxelles à partir des années 1890. L'entreprise de création d'un symbolisme wallon apparaît ainsi comme l'une des sources essentielles ou comme un modèle du symbolisme belge, dont Chainaye pourrait bien être considéré comme le précurseur.

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  • : Influence from Ulysses
    SHIN Dai-ki
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 82-95
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     Park Tae-won was an important member of Kuinhoi, which was a Korean modernist literary group of the 1930s. In addition to free-indirect speech, he applied cinematic techniques such as “overlap" and “montage" in his masterpiece, “One day of Mr. Gubo as a novelist". James Joyce's Ulysses was eagerly read by the members of the above-mentioned group. And although Park himself did not fully recognize it in his essay, “Expression, description, technique", in Ulysses there are many passages where those techniques are adopted. The style of Park's work offers a strong resemblance to that of several episodes of Ulysses, especially ‘Calypso', ‘Lotus-Eaters', ‘Aeolus', ‘Scylla and Charybdis' and ‘Wandering Rocks' . In view of these facts, it is highly probable that he was under the influence of Joyce's novel while writing “One day of Mr. Gubo as a novelist".

     The fact that Park Tae-won paid chief attention to cinematic techniques of Ulysses is noteworthy, because his Korean coteries and Japanese contemporary writers regarded it as a psychological novel. “One day of Mr. Gubo as a novelist" of Park is no mean achievement in the history of Korean modernist literature.

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  • : “Birōdo no yume"
    LIN Qianqian
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 96-110
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     “Birõdo no yume" (Dreams of Velvet, 1919) is one of Tanizaki Jun'ichirō's works that is set in China. The story was written after Tanizaki came back from a trip to China in 1918. Previous research has argued that the work is set not in actual China, but in Tanizaki's fantasy world. However, the story is not pure fantasy; the setting is modeled on the country villa “Luo Yuan" and main residence “Hardoon Garden," both built by Silas Aaron Hardoon, a British real estate mogul of Jewish descent, who was active in Shanghai at that time. The story's heroine, the concubine of Wen Xiuqing, is thought to be modeled on Luo Lirui, who was Hardoon's Chinese wife. Hardoon also had many years of experience in the opium trade.

     This paper suggests that Tanizaki disguised his desires under the pretense of interest in Hardoon's private garden, and compares his story with other literary works about opium addiction, such as Thomas De Quincy's Confessions of an English Opium-Eater (1821), Charles Baudelaire's Artificial Paradises (1860), and Satō Haruo's “Shimon" (Fingerprint, 1918). The paper highlights the actual conditions of the artificial garden that Tanizaki tried to create in “Birōdo no yume" and the dreams that he projected on China.

     Furthermore, at the same time this work was being serialized, Tanizaki was translating Théophile Gautier's work “Clarimonde" (1836) with Akutagawa Ryūnosuke. By examining the influence of “Clarimonde" on “Birōdo no yume," this essay also reveals Tanizaki's artistic interests at the time the story was written.

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  • : “Civilization Is Suggestion"
    SASAKI Hideaki
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 111-125
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     The text named “ノート" (Notebook), the collection of draft essays Natsume Soseki wrote in 1902-03, during the latter half of his study in London and immediately after his return to Japan, has been hardly touched by scholars. They are hampered not only by its great volume of over 700 pages but by its abstruseness. The aim of my paper is to clarify the structure and arguments of this text, which served as the basis for many of his future lectures, essays and novels.

     My interpretation can be summed up as follows: before going to England, Soseki had discovered the great function of “suggestion" in Haiku during his practice as a Haiku poet. This was realized probably by his reading Herbert Spencer's argument on “suggestion" in his Philosophy of Style and his translation of portions of Earnest Hart's “Hypnotism and Humbug", in which he even devised a new Japanese word for “suggestion" (提起法). And in London, he came to think that this kind of “suggestion" effect could be found in every stage of the evolution of personal or collective consciousness. If this evolution of collective consciousness is called “開化" (civilization), declares Soseki, “Civilization is suggestion. "

     Citing instances of Newton's apple and Galileo's lamp, which are thought to have worked as “suggestion" so as to stimulate their new ideas, Soseki also uses the Buddhist framework of 因(hetu) and 縁(pratyaya) in order to explain “suggestion" effects. He writes for instance, “cognition of an object or event suggested = stored up impression of the suggested+the sense impression of the suggesting." This conception of “suggestion" is very analogous, though coincidentally, to Saussure's semiotic concept of “signe (sign)" which consists of “signifiant (signifier) +signifié (signified)."

     Among the arguments in Notebook , which are mostly based on this philosophy, one of the most stimulating and important ones is the criticism on the naïve faith in “universal value" shared by almost all Western literary critics. Soseki explains, criticizing W.J. Courthope or Tolstoy, that this sort of universalism is invalid because the “taste" of art in each country or culture must be the result of the “differentiation" process of each civilization, inexorably advanced by innumerable “suggestions", which must therefore differ from those in other cultures.

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  • : Resonance of Solitary Souls A Source Study of the German Phrase in Soseki's Kojin
    HIGAYA Mihoko
    2017 Volume 59 Pages 126-141
    Published: March 31, 2017
    Released: April 01, 2020
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

     Kojin (The Wayfarer) is the second novel of Natsume Soseki's late trilogy. Like the other two, Higansugimade (To the Spring Equinox and Beyond) and Kokoro, the work consists of short stories with varying points of view. It appeared serially in the Asahi from 6 December 1912 to 15 November 1913. However, the recurrence of the author's gastric ulcer caused an interval of almost half a year, resulting in an apparent cleavage between the first three parts, namely “Tomodachi" (Friend), “Ani" (Brother) and “Kaettekara" (Return and After), and the fourth and last part “Jinrou" (Anguish). The first three parts depict the domestic tragedy of Ichiro, the protagonist, and his wife Nao, mainly through the eyes of his younger brother Jiro, whereas the last part reveals Ichiro's metaphysical anguish and existential dread by way of the report of his friend and colleague called H.

     This is most clearly seen in two German phrases in Jinrou 36: “Keine Brücke führt von Mensch zu Mensch" (There is no bridge leading from one man to another) and “Einsamkeit, du meine Heimat Einsamkeit!" (Loneliness, loneliness, thou mine home.) While the latter is known to be a quotation from Niezche's Zarathustra, the source of the former, though cited as a ‘German proverb', has not been identified so far. But the present writer has found that the phrase was rather familiar to intellectuals in Germany around 1910s-20s, and examples, including those of a variant, can be seen in influential books of various genres, e.g. Richard Vob's Zwei Menschen (1911), Max Frischeisen-Köhler's Wissenschaft und Wirklichkeit (1912), Fritz Kahn's Die Juden als Rasse und Kulturvolk (1920) and Franz Rosenzweig's Der Stern der Erlösung (1921). Furthermore, close reading and comparative study of them indicates that their origin can be traced back to a poem, the last line of which reads, “und keine Brücke ist von Mensch zu Mensch." The poem appeared in Nachgelassene Schriften (Posthumous Works) by Walter Calé in 1907; the author had taken his own life at the young age of 22 in 1904.

     This paper tries to specify this poem as the original, if not immediate, source of the ‘German proverb' in Kojin, and to examine how and why the phrase spread in Germany and came into Soseki's eyes, suggesting the synchonicity of sentiment which prevailed both in Germany and in Japan.

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