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Unformatted text preview: 1 (Under Reconstruction by Mori gai, translated by Ivan Morris as published in Modern Japanese Stories: An Anthology (Charles E. Tuttle, 1962) The following story has been scanned from Modern Japanese Stories: An Anthology edited by Ivan Morris with translations by Edward Seidensticker, George Sait, Geoffrey Sargent and Ivan Morris, with woodcuts by Masakazu Kuwata. Rutland, Vermont & Tokyo, Japan: Charles E. Tuttle Company. The anthology is in many editions. The edition I used was the first edition of 1962. The below text is the result of first scanning the original then using OCR software to convert those scans to text. While I have attempted to catch any errors in spelling or formatting (such as italicizing foreign terms and such), I cannot guarantee that the text is an exact replication of the original. Also, font choice and formatting do not try to imitate the original. Finally, the woodblock print that is inserted into this story has not been included, to help keep the file size small. The original text appears on pages 35-44. 2 (Under Reconstruction by Mori gai, translated by Ivan Morris as published in Modern Japanese Stories: An Anthology (Charles E. Tuttle, 1962) Mori gai (1862-1922) is considered by many Japanese critics to be the countrys outstanding literary figure since the Meiji Restoration. Whether or not we accept this view, gais name comes logically at the head of any list of modern Japanese story writers. gai was the son of a doctor. After graduating from the medical department of Tokyo University, he became a surgeon in the imperial army. In 1884 he was sent to Germany to pursue his study of medicine. He remained there for four years, and was thus the first important Japanese writer to become well acquainted at first hand with Europe. Of the Western countries, Germany was to have the greatest influence on gais thinking and writing. gai was endowed with extraordinary energy and he succeeded in pursuing a very active literary career while at the same time carrying out his official army duties. Much of his early work consisted of translations of German poems and short stories. In 1890 he published his first piece of fiction. This was The Dancing Girl, the romantic story of an unhappy love affair between a German dancer and a Japanese man. (There is an echo of this subject in Under Reconstruction, translated here.) The story appears to have been closely based on personal experience, and gai himself describes it as an Ich Roman . This is an early example of the confessional type of writing that was so enthusiastically espoused by the naturalists and the other practitioners of the I-novel. Having served in the army during both the Sino-Japanese and Russo-Japanese wars, gai rose in 1907 to the rank of surgeon-general. He retired in 1916 and was appointed director of the Imperial Museum....
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This note was uploaded on 04/23/2011 for the course JAPAN 7b taught by Professor Wallace during the Spring '11 term at University of California, Berkeley.
- Spring '11