Images from the Past: Intertextuality in Japanese Premodern Literature
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This volume brings together scholars from different backgrounds and career stages to rethink the role and scope of intertextuality in the context of premodern Japan. From antiquity to the rise of modernity, originality through repetition persists as a staple in the literary, performative, and artistic traditions of this country. Nonetheless, rather than slavish recycling of pre-existing tropes, the redeployment of familiar motifs by patterns of borrowing, allusion, and imitation would become a means to explore untrodden creative pathways and craft a shared sense of cultural belonging. Stemming from an international symposium hosted at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice in 2021 with the generous support of The Japan Foundation, the papers in this collection offer a thoughtful contribution to this debate by engaging texts from different historical periods, media, and genres – be it poetic, narrative, theatrical, visual, or religious. Although intertextuality may not be a new topic, the essays that follow attest to the enduring appeal of a concept whose explanatory power proves most effective when combined with other methods of inquiry, such as discourse analysis, social sciences, gender studies, and material culture. Thus, while opening new windows onto Japan’s literary worlds, these cross-disciplinary approaches provide further insights into the uses (and abuses) of the past in a non-Western non-modern society.
Edo literature • Japanese poetry • Temporality • Sharebon • Kana literature • Dōgen • Religion • Fantastic literature • Ise monogatari • Genji monogatari • Sarayashiki • Morishima Chūryō • Baba Bunkō • Intertextuality • Book indexes • Kabuki • Gender dynamics • Premodern Japanese literature • Nō theatre • Layers of narration in intertextuality • Utatane • Waka • Nun Abutsu • Tsuruya Nanboku IV • Female enlightenment • Nihon ryōiki • Chinese novels • Sūtras • Mythologies • Zen • Metatextuality • Roland Barthes • Sarashina nikki • Kokin wakashū • Text • Classical Chinese literature • Re-interpretation • Shinkokinshū • Katsura Bunji I • Court Diary • Kawara-no-in • Fujiwara no Shunzei (Toshinari) • Yomihon • Commentaries • Inner scriptures • Buddhism • Ki no Tsurayuki, Kagerō nikki • San’yūtei Enchō • Fujiwara no Teika (Sadaie) • Outer writings