Essay on Medieval World Reflected in Japanese Literature

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Speaking historically, the word “medieval” is usually associated with the middle ages of Europe, where things were thought to be primitive. However, there was a medieval period in Japan as well. Europe and Japan are separated by two countries, so it is not surprising to see that their respective medieval worlds occurred at different times. For Japan a lot of it occurred during its Heian and Kamakura periods, where the power split from the Imperial Court and was shared with the Shogunate. Between the Heian Era and the Kamakura Era, there were changes of whom the powered was controlled and the religion of Buddhism, although significant in both eras, was starting to surface as a stronger power, itself. But during this period in Japan, the …show more content…
This shows how much of an impact religion was now having on Japan. Even poems that were not in those books had a sense of Buddhist beliefs, reflecting impermanence, karma, and attachment to the physical world. Some of the largest contributors to the new anthology were monks, such as Saigyou and Jakuren, the latter being one of the compilers as well, and Princess Shikishi, who was a vessel virgin for the Kamo Shrine. Things during the medieval period were showing signs of Japan becoming a very religiously influenced place. People had more than nature to talk about, with the surfacing of Buddhism in their literature. A work, published in the Muromachi period, was the “Tsurezuregusa,” written by Yoshida Kenkou. The “Tsurezuregusa,” according to Donald Keene, echoed Sei Shonagon’s “Makura no Soushi,” which was written in the Heian period. Sei Shonagon was a court lady and criticized the aspects of court life. Yoshide Kenkou, on the other hand, was a Buddhist monk that was criticizing both the lives of monks and people in general. However, he does so in a way that is more direct and with a different sort of approach to his preaching than Sei Shonagon had. He bluntly states how people, usually men, should be, and is often contradictory. He explains that they should not do something, but do it in moderation. But most of the time, his explanations can be traced back to

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