Reading Pre-modern Japanese Texts 1
- Module Code:
- Year of study:
- Final Year
- Taught in:
- Term 2
This module aims to introduce students to a range of pre-modern works of literature and enable them, with a dictionary to read on their own. Through close reading and analysis of the content, students will learn how to read and interpret pre-modern Japanese texts. Through writing an essay on an aspect of pre-modern Japanese literature, students will develop analytical and critical skills.
Objectives and learning outcomes of the module
On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:
- gain an understanding of key periods in pre-Edo Japanese culture, as expressed through a variety of literary texts read in the original or in translation
- use the skills acquired to read selective texts in the original language
- read a variety of genres to gain insight into the role and function of literature in pre-modern society
- read, with a dictionary, a range of pre-modern prose and poetry texts from the pre-Edo period
The module will concentrate on the pre-Edo period rather than undertake a survey of the whole pre-modern period in order to gain a more complex understanding.
Total of 10 weeks teaching with 3 hours classroom contact per week consisting of a 2 hour lecture and a 1 hour tutorial.
Scope and syllabus
An introduction to classical Japanese grammar. Selected readings from Heian and Kamakura/Muromachi texts, both poetry and prose, such as Tales of Ise, Hojoki and Noh drama.
Method of assessment
One two-hour written examination taken in May/June (50%); one 2500 word essay to be submitted on Friday, week 1, in the term following teaching (50%).
- Haruo Shirane, Classical Japanese Reader and Essential Dictionary (Columbia, 2007)
- McCullough, Helen Craig. Bungo Manual: Selected Reference Materials for Students of Classical Japanese. Ithaca, N.Y. : East Asia Program, Cornell University, 1988. 3rd printing with index, 1993.
- Wixted, John Timothy. A Handbook to Classical Japanese. Ithaca, NY: East Asia Program, Cornell University, 2006.