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Master of Arts (M.A.)

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Shinsen rōeishū, kanshi, waka, manuscript, Fujiwara no Mototoshi


Shinsen rōeishū as a poetry collection of kanshi and waka compiled by Fujiwara no Mototoshi has not been studied as comprehensive as Wakan rōeishū. This thesis focuses on the study of the anthology, the historical and cultural backgrounds, the creator and representative Japanese and Chinese poets, as well as translations and cultural study of several poems. It begins with a broad discussion of the development of poetry recitation and the reception of Chinese literature in Heian period. Next, several more specific aspects of the anthology are discussed, including the emergence and completion of Shinsen rōeishū, the content and its reception, as well as manuscript copies. In the following chapter, discussion about the creator deals with his conservative poetic style and his strained personal relationships with other poets such as Minamoto no Toshiyori. These aspects may lead to a deeper understanding on the relationship between these factors and the spread of Shinsen rōeishū. In the appendices, several representative poems in Shinsen rōeishū are translated. Reasons for the choice of certain target poems are put forward. Meanwhile the translations also include cultural and historical studies for some poems, in order to inspire further study on other poems in Shinsen rōeishū. Additionally, certain influential poets who made great contributions to Shinsen rōeishū as well as the development of kanshi are also discussed, such as Sugawara no Michizane and Bai Juyi.


First Advisor

Stephen M. Forrest