Published online by Cambridge University Press: 24 September 2009
Anyone familiar with classical Japanese literature cannot but be struck by the rich array of terms such as mono no aware, yugen, wabi and sabi, to mention just a few, which are regarded as being central to the understanding of Japanese artistic theory and practice. These categories were not, of course, essentialist and unchanging. They were dynamic concepts which were subject to major transformations. These transformations illuminate important aspects of Japan's cultural history.
This article has been awarded the Major Barwis-Holliday Award for Far Eastern Studies for 1995.
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2 Ōno Susumu has suggested that suki in the Heian period was quite close in meaning to the modern Japanese word suki. It signified an unbridled flow of emotions towards a particular object or person and reflected a sense of pure enjoyment which was free of moral constraints. See Susumu, Ōno, “Ōchō bungaku no kotoba”, Nihon bungaku kenkyū (Tokyo), pp. 50–1.Google Scholar
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20 GM, ii, p. 23; trans, in EGS, TG, pp. 164–5.
21 GM, iv, p. 203; Cf. Seidensticker's translation, TG, p. 609.
22 GM, ii, p. 23; trans, in EGS, TG, p. 256.
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