Chapter 5: Waka Murasaki (Lavender), 1857

Lunch-Hour Lecture

"A Thousand Years of The Tale of Genji"

Time: 12:05 pm - 12:55 pm

Date: Friday, January 27, 2017

Location: University of Alberta Museums Galleries at Enterprise Square (10230 Jasper Ave) - Idea Lounge

Speaker: Dr. Anne Commons

(Admission by donation)

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Back by popular demand... the University of Alberta Museums is proud to present the Lunch-Hour Lecture "A Thousand Years of The Tale of Genji" presented by Dr. Anne Commons, an Associate Professor in the Department of East Asian Studies at the University of Alberta.

Written by a lady-in-waiting at the Japanese imperial court in the eleventh century, The Tale of Genji has inspired readers, writers and artists for a thousand years with its depiction of the life and loves of Genji, a son of the emperor. This lecture will discuss the content of The Tale of Genji and then examine the history of its reception in later ages by an ever-increasing number of people from an ever-widening range of social backgrounds. The final part of the lecture will focus on the University of Alberta Museum's nineteenth-century full suite of The Tale of Genji prints currently included in the exhibition, A Little Bit of Infinity, discussing the prints in the broader context of Genji reception.

About the Speaker:

Dr. Anne Commons is an Associate Professor in the Department of East Asian Studies at the University of Alberta. Her field of research specialization is premodern Japanese literature, particularly court poetry, and she is particularly interested in issues of literary reception and canonization. Her most recent publication is the volume Lovable Losers: The Heike in Action and Memory (University of Hawai'i Press, 2015); she was a co-editor of this book (with Mikael Adolphson) and contributed a chapter on the style and social function of poetry composed by members of the warrior class in twelfth-century Japan. She regularly teaches classes that involve The Tale of Genji and classes that involve woodblock prints.

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Photo Credit:

Chapter 5: Waka Murasaki (Lavender), 1857

Kunisada II (B. 1823 – D. 1880)

woodcut on paper from the novel Genji Monogatari

University of Alberta Art Collection (1985.42.6)

University of Alberta Museums

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