The Journal of Japanese Studies



The Production of Literature and the Effaced Realm of the Political

The understanding of literature in Japan underwent an epistemological shift in the mid-1880s, when literature came into being as an ontological category as modern fiction found its identity around the themes ninjo, fuzoku, and setai (emotions, social customs, and manners).  By historically contextualizing these three components of modern fiction, first introduced by Tsubouchi Shoyo’s Shosetsu shinzui (1885-86), I argue that they were posited in opposition to what constituted the political at that historical juncture.  I do so by analyzing Shoyo’s criticism of Takizawa Bakin, which signifies his rejection of the political discourse and ultimately of the Freedom and People’s Rights Movement.

Volume 31, Number 1 (Winter 2005)
© 2005 Society for Japanese Studies


Marie Anchordoguy and Kevin M. Doak, Coeditors     Martha L. Walsh, Managing Editor
The Journal of Japanese Studies
University of Washington     Box 353650     Seattle, WA 98195-3650 U.S.A.
Phone 206-543-9302    Fax 206-685-0668    Email
© Copyright 2004-2008  Society for Japanese Studies