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Old 01-24-2005, 08:13 PM   #1
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Japanese literature

Anybody know a good place to start? Colleen's got me interested in looking at eastern literature, particularly Japanese (though I'd take some recommendations of Chinese lit, too). Anthologies are nice and preferable, but I hear there are some good translations of novels as well.
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Old 01-24-2005, 08:30 PM   #2
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wonder if those audio tapes are any good? Try college language books. They seem pretty decent.

I studied Japanese years ago and remember very little of it. Pronunciation is easy. Sentence are easy but at the same time seem to be said in reverse.
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Old 01-24-2005, 08:45 PM   #3
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I'm more interested in translations the writings themselves, not so much learning the language. That's a bigger obstacle for a later time.
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Old 01-24-2005, 10:40 PM   #4
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'The Tale of Genji' (Genji Monogatari) is the obvious choice. This is supposedly the worlds first novel.

Here are some decent sites with info on Japanese literature:

http://www.kanzaki.com/jinfo/jliterature.html

http://www.connect.net/ron/japaneseliterature.html
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Old 01-25-2005, 05:38 AM   #5
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If you can track it down try and find 'Tales of Old Japan' (or similar title) published by the Charles E. Tuttle company and collated by a bloke called Alfred something. I had it years ago and was fascinated, although when I moved the thing disappeared.

Also check out some Mishima.

For Chinese lit there are the Four Great Classics:
Hong Lou Meng (Dream of the Red Mansions)
San Guo Yan Yi (Romance of the Three Kingdoms)
Shui Hu Zhuan (The Water Margin Tales)
Xi You Ji (Journey to the West)

All are terrifically long.
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Old 01-25-2005, 12:29 PM   #6
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Yeah, one of my professor's suggested Genji, I'm probably picking up the box set 2 volume translation by Royall Tyler for Colleen for Valentine's Day. I'm sure she already has some version of it. But this is a very nice set.
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