Nō Drama Analysis: Hanjo-Lady Han Essay

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Out of all the nō plays that we were required to read in class from Atsumori to Sumidagawa, there were sometimes resolution to the story but never truly happy endings. Therefore, my views on nō dramas were not very high. I personally love happy endings so when I received this assignment I was determined to find one that suited to my liking, thus I found Hanjo. According to the book, Japanese Nō dramas by Royall Tyler, Hanjo was written by Zeami himself and the honzetsu of the story is a famous Chinese story called Han Shōyo or Lady Han (which could be found in the Wakan rōei shū, or the “Collection of Japanese and Chinese poems for Chanting Aloud”). Zeami even mentions Lady Han in the story: “Gentleman: Well, what have you done with …show more content…
All though the meanings of the fans started out differently, as the story progressed, and Yoshida did not come back even after he said he would, the fan began to hold the same meaning of betrayal to Hanago as it did to Lady Han. Therefore, in a way, because of all her insecurities, Hanago turned herself into her version of Lady Han. Usually the ha, or the body of the play starts when the shite enters, but in this case I believe that the body starts a little bit after the shite already enters—when Hanago finishes explaining her plans. She states that she will leave Nogami (her home and where she and Yoshida met) and go along the Ōmi Road to find Yoshida herself to vanquish her grief. Ōmi Road lies between Nogami and Miyako and because she states that she will walk along the Ōmi Road, it implies that she is probably going to the capital to find Yoshida. The next scene, it jumps to Yoshida and his attendants leaving Mount Fuji: “Sad is our farewell to towering Fuji” (pg. 112). Mount Fuji was one of the major places that all travelers wanted to go. After finding out that she was no longer in Nogami, he goes to Tadasu (a shrine in Kyoto) to pray to be united with Hanago. In the meantime, Hanago goes mad with her assumptions of betrayal and her madness is shown to the audience by her holding sasa stems (we also see a similar image in Sumidagawa where the woman in the beginning is also crazy and holding the

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