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Master of Arts (M.A.)
Year Degree Awarded
Month Degree Awarded
jingi, jingika, senzai, senzaishu, waka, shinto
This thesis analyzes the development of the Jingika book in the first seven Japanese waka anthologies (chokusenshū). Jingika are Japanese poems written on the gods of the heaven and the earth and illustrate man’s interactions with them through worship and prayer. They have characteristics in common with what modern scholars term the Shinto religion, and have been referenced as such in past scholarship. However, jingika are more accurately a product of the amalgamation of native kami cults and foreign Buddhist doctrine. Although the first independent Jingika book emerged in the seventh anthology (Senzaishū), poems which can be termed Jingika book predecessors exist as early as the first (Kokinshū). The second chapter of this thesis determines which of those early poems had the most influence over the development of an independent Jingika book. The last chapter provides a full original translation of the thirty-three poems of the first Jingika book and analyzes the intricacies of their arrangement introduced through new methods of association and progression by Fujiwara no Shunzei. The shrines that are mentioned in the poems also correspond to the development of a state religion centered on a small number of shrines designated as protectors of the state. In light of this, the arrangement of the poems in the Jingika book creates a metaphysical pilgrimage to the most important shrines at the dawn of the medieval period and asserts the emperor’s position as cultural center during a time of political turmoil.
Stephen M. Forrest