The Emotion Of Depression In Okura's Dialogue On Poverty

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In the poem, “Dialogue on Poverty” the setting of winter embodies the emotion of despair that both the poor and destitute man possess. During the time period in which this poem was written the intended audience was the wealthy nobility that was separated from poverty. Okura recognized that the nobility did not pay attention to the masses in poverty, and so he sought to change this with his poem. However, just outright telling the nobility to pay attention to the poor would be ineffective. Instead he had present them a poem that contained something that they readily consumed and enjoyed. With this in mind the author employed a season to represent the emotions of the poor because at this time the wealthy enjoyed poems with a focus on nature. …show more content…
However, to the poor man the “the night is still cold” and no matter how many layers he puts on it will continue to be cold (Yomanoue no Okura, Pg.1096; Ln.21). This thought is quite similar to the previous one that no matter what happens, the man cannot escape the despair he feels. The reason he cannot escape the cold and his despair is because he is stuck in poverty. No matter how many layers he puts on he will continue to be cold and no matter what he tries to do he can never leave his state. This detail is pointed out so much in order to make the audience not only feel sympathy but also guilt. The nobles feels guilt for the reason that even as these people suffer, they turn a blind eye and act as if the underprivileged do not exist. Now that Okura puts the situation of the poor in front them they can no longer look away and must recognize their actions of ignorance, in doing so they feel …show more content…
The author through such descriptions of the man’s conditions attempts to build sympathy in the reader. However, the purpose of Okura is not to criticize the lack of attention that is payed to a specific man. Instead it is to criticize disregard on the impoverished in general, which is why both men are nameless. The author did not want the audience to feel sympathy for a specific person, but instead for a representation of many people. As many people suffer the exact same thing as the poor man. With this, the poet is building his main goal of criticizing the nobility’s ignorance of the poor.
The poem “Dialogue on Poverty” by Yamanoue no Okura employs the seasonal setting of winter to represent the despair of the poor in order to criticize the nobility’s ignorance to poverty. Okura takes the responsibility to criticize and make the nobility realize their lack of attention to the poor. To fulfill his responsibility he employs symbolism in order to evoke sympathy and guilt from the wealthy nobility. As a result, Okura is able to criticize his audience, the nobility, in order to convince them to recognize their connection to the

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