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Tale of Genji

The Tale of Genjii

 The Tale of Genjii is a piece of Japanese Literature that was written by two women – a noble woman and her lady in waiting. It is thought to have been written in the 11th century, and the work offered a true account of the lifestyle of high couriers during that period.

It took 9 centuries for the Tale of Genjii to be translated, first into modern Japanese and then into English.  The Tale of Genjii was or is thought to be a little shocking, especially for those times, focusing on women, thrill, romance and psychology.  There is also much debate about how much the lady in waiting actually wrote, Murasaki Shikibu, given the fraught relationship between noble women and their staff, especially at the time.

Perhaps the lady in waiting wrote it all?  And perhaps this is why the Tale is so controversial in Japan, but also much speculated.  It was a Tale that was way before its time.  The tale has been drawn about, quite beautifully, images of the characters, or women, and of relationships.

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