New York: Vintage Classics, 1990. Edward G. Seidensticker (tr. and abr.), Yamamoto Shunsho (illustrator). Reprint. Softcover. Used - Good. Slightly worn cover and spine. Sticker residue around spine. Toned/foxed. Pencil underlining and highlighting on a few pages. B/W illustrations. 13x 20.2 cm. 360 pp. Item #10239
In the eleventh century Murasaki Shikibu, a lady in the Heian court of Japan, wrote the world's first novel. But The Tale of Genji is no mere artifact. It is, rather, a lively and astonishingly nuanced portrait of a refined society where every dalliance is an act of political consequence, a play of characters whose inner lives are as rich and changeable as those imagined by Proust. Chief of these is "the shining Genji," the son of the emperor and a man whose passionate impulses create great turmoil in his world and very nearly destroy him. This edition, recognized as the finest version in English, contains a dozen chapters from early in the book, carefully chosen by the translator, Edward G. Seidensticker, with an introduction explaining the selection. It is illustrated throughout with woodcuts from a seventeenth-century edition.