'The Tale of Genji' as a Buddhist parable: a meditation

Wilkinson, Robert (2012). 'The Tale of Genji' as a Buddhist parable: a meditation. In: Marchiano, Grazia ed. Labirinti della mente, Visioni del mondo: il lascito intellettuale di Elémire Zolla nel XXI secolo. Siena: Societa Bibliografica Toscana, pp. 261–274.


This essay considers the way in which 'The Tale of Genji' by Murasaki Shikibu is wholly conceived within a Buddhist world-view, much as 'The Divine Comedy' is conceived within that of Christianity. The entire plot instantiates Buddhist views. Unlike another great work of literature on the theme of time, Proust's 'A la recherche du temps perdu', Lady Murasaki, consistently with her Buddhist outlook, offers us no consolation for the sufferings of this world.

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