. Japanese did not have letters until chinese introduced their letters in second or third century.After then the japanese started using chinese letters. Of course ancient japanese used these lettersfor learning chinese progressed culture. As you know, chinese letters are basically ideogramsthat were originally pictograph and every single letter has its own meaning. 4. For example, the letter for turtle is 亀 . This letter is simplified one as compared tooriginal one but still the shape of turtle is obvious. Roughly saying, average japanese can readletters of 5,000 or more but can write down 2,000 or less. At elementary school and junior highschool, 1,800 of letters are taught. 5. The modern Japanese writing system uses three main scripts: Kanji , ideographs fromChinese characters, Kana , a pair of syllabaries, consisting of Hiragana , used for native Japanesewords, and Katakana , used for foreign loanwords and sometimes to replace kanji or hiragana foremphasis. 6. Kanji 癌 gan ("cancer") 峠 tōge (mountain pass) Katakanaコンピュータゲーム konpyūta gēmu ("computer game") コーヒー kōhī ,("coffee") Hiragana コンニチワ konnichiwa ("hello") 皮膚科 hifuka("dermatology") 7. 8. 9. Classical literature ( koten bungaku ), meaning literature from the earliest times up to theMeiji Restoration of 1868, is customarily divided by literary scholars into four major periods:jōdai (antiquity) , chūko (middle antiquity) , chūsei (the middle ages) , and kinsei (the recentpast) . 10. Jōdai covers Japanese literary history through the Nara period (710-794); chūko is usedmore or less synonymously with the literature of the Heian period (794-1180); chūsei takes in theKamakura (1180-1333), Muromachi (1333-1573), Azuchi-Momoyama (1573-1600) periods;kinsei is most often used to refer to the Edo period (1600-1867). 11. Written literature in Japan dates from the Nara period, although an oral tradition existedwell before that time. The work that is usually taken to reveal the process of change from an oralto a written tradition and from communal to personal concerns is the collection of poems knownas the Man ‘yōshū (The Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves). 12. It is the oldest existing collection of Japanese poetry, compiled some time around 759 A.D.during the Nara period. The collection is divided into twenty parts or books, mirroring a similarpractice in collections of Chinese poems of the time 13. The collection contains 265 chōka (long poems), 4,207 tanka (short poems), one tanrenga(short connecting poem), one bussokusekika (poems on the Buddhas footprints at Yakushi-ji inNara), four kanshi (Chinese poems), and 22 Chinese prose passages. 14. Earlier poems have Confucian or Taoist themes and later poems reflecting on Buddhistteachings. It is important for using one of the earliest Japanese writing systems It was influentialenough to give the writing system its name: "the kana of the Manyōshū ". Thissystem uses Chinese characters in a variety of functions: their usual ideographic or logographicsenses 15. Literature in the early Heian period flourished under Chinese (Tang) influence, but becamemore expressive of native sentiments as Japan withdrew into itself and political institutions basedon Chinese models either collapsed or were molded into more congenial forms.
16. Chinese poetry was supplanted by the wak a (literally, "Japanese song") as thepreeminent literary form. Imperial collections of poetry were compiled, and prose works, mostby women, were written in the newly developed phonetic kana script. 17. The decline of the aristocracy toward the end of the period was paralleled by a loss ofcreative energy and a growing sense of pessimism, although collections of folktales and popularsongs signalled the involvement of a new social class in the production of works of recognizedliterary value. 18. It is a genre of classical Japanese verse and one of the major genres of Japanese literature.The term was coined during the Heian period, and was used to distinguish Japanese-languagepoetry from kanshi (poetry written in Chinese by Japanese poets) 19. Traditionally waka in general has had no concept of rhyme (indeed, certain arrangementsof rhymes, even accidental, were considered dire faults in a poem), or even of line. Instead oflines, waka has the unit ( 連 ) and the phrase ( 句 ). ( Units or phrases are often turned into lineswhen poetry is translated or transliterated into Western languages, however.) 20. In the Heian period the lovers would exchange waka in the morning when lovers met at thewomans home. The exchanged waka were called Kinuginu ( 後朝 ), because it was thought theman wanted to stay with his lover and when the sun rose he had almost no time to put on hisclothes on which he had lain instead of a mattress (it being the custom in those days). 21. Much like with tea, there were a number of rituals and events surrounding thecomposition, presentation, and judgment of waka. There were two types of waka party thatproduced occasional poetry: Utakai and Utaawase . Utakai was a party in which all participantswrote a waka and recited them. 22. Utakai derived from Shikai, Kanshi party and was held in occasion people gathered likeseasonal party for the New Year, some celebrations for a newborn baby, a birthday, or a newly-built house. Utaawase was a contest in two teams. 23. Themes were determined and a chosen poet from each team wrote a waka for a giventheme. The judge appointed a winner for each theme and gave points to the winning team. Theteam which received the largest sum was the winner. 24. The political turbulence associated with the Gempei Wars of 1180 to 1185 and theestablishment of the Kamakura bakufu (1192) gave rise to a literature that both centered onmilitary exploits and often expressed disillusion with such exploits. 25. Mujō (impermanence, transience) became a key concept underlying the literature of thisperiod, although at the same time groups devoted to the composition of renga (linked verse) wereturning to literature for the purpose of seeking pleasure there. 26. The Edo period was characterized by the growing cultural influence exercised by samuraiand townspeople. The commercial class in particular benefited from various economic andtechnological developments, the result of which was a great flowering of culture in the Genrokuperiod (1688-1704). 27. The haikai master Matsuo Bashō, the novelist Ihara Saikaku, and the dramatist ChikamatsuMonzaemon are all associated with this enormous outburst of creative activity. The nationscultural center shifted from the Kyoto-Osaka region to Edo in the second half of the eighteenthcentury, leading to the production of large quantities of gesaku (frivolous works) by the writerswho constituted the last literary generation before the advent of Western influence. 28.
29. The basis for the periodization of modern literature ( kindai bungaku ) is graduallybecoming problematic as the "modern" period grows ever longer. The most commondivision is the one based on the reigns of the emperors who have ruled since 1868: Meiji (1868-1912) , Taishō (1912-1926) , Shōwa (1926-1989) , and Heisei (from 1989) . 30. The Meiji period was when Japan, under Western influence, took the first steps towarddeveloping a modern literature. The major hallmarks up to the time of the Russo-Japanese Warare considered to be Tsubouchi Shōyōs theoretical study The Essence of the Novel (Shōsetsushinzui, 1885) 31. because of its advocacy of psychological realism, and Futabatei Shimeis Drifting Cloud(Ukigumo, 1887), both for its realistic character portrayal and because the narrative medium isan approximation of everyday speech. Counterpoints are offered by the highly stylized prose ofthe Kenyūsha (Friends of the Inkstone) group centering on Ozaki Kōyō, and the kind ofromanticism evident in the early stories of Mori Ōgai and, 32. especially, the poetry of Kitamura Tōkoku, Shimazaki Tōson, and Yosano Tekkan. Themovement known as Japanese Naturalism gained prominence with the publication of ShimazakiTōsons novel The Broken Commandment , (Hakai, 1906) and Tayama Katais short story"The Quilt" (Futon, 1907). 33. Naturalism predominated on the literary scene until around 1910, although such authors asNatsume Sōseki, Mori Ōgai, and Nagai Kafū were not associated with it and might even beconsidered antagonistic. The humanistic idealism of the Shirakaba (White Birch) writers is takento mark a turn away from Naturalism and toward a broader definition of literature. 34. The intellectual aestheticism of Akutagawa Ryūnosuke and decadence of TanizakiJunichirō characterize this short period, as do (toward its end) the introduction of elements ofWestern literary modernism in the early work of Yokomizo Riichi and Kawabata Yasunari andthe first stirrings of proletarian literature. The Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 is sometimestaken as a major cultural divide in this process. 35. Proletarian literature was the chief literary movement of the 1920s, supplemented by theuniquely Japanese genre of autobiographical fiction known as the "I novel" (shishōsetsu or watakushi shōsetsu ). 36. Government suppression of proletarian literature in the 1930s was attended by thepublication of "conversion" ( tenkō ) novels by writers compelled to renounce theircommunist ideals. The subsequent patriotic writings of the war years have largely beenforgotten. 37. The end of the war witnessed a resurgent cosmopolitanism that has resulted in a strikingliterary diversity and has led to a reassessment of the way in which tradition and modernity canbe said to contribute to the Japanese sense of identity. 38. This process of reevaluation can be seen in the choice of the two postwar Japanese winnersof the Nobel Prize for Literature: Kawabata Yasunari (1968), who titled his acceptance speech"Japan the Beautiful and Myself," and Ōe Kenzaburō (1994), who in deliberatecontrast chose the title "Japan the Ambiguous and Myself." 39. 40. 41. Kabuki Theater Noh Theater Bunraku - Puppet Theater Geisha Musical Instruments 42. Sado - Tea Ceremony Kodo - The Way of Incense Ikebana - Flower Arranging Ukiyoe -Woodblock Prints Bonsai - Miniature Trees Origami - Paper Folding Classical LiteratureModern Literature
43. Imperial Family The government of Japan is a constitutional monarchy where the power ofthe Emperor is very limited. As a ceremonial figurehead, he is defined by the [[Constitution ofJapan|constitutionby the Prime Minister of Japan and other elected members of the Diet, whilesovereignty is vested in the Japanese people. The Emperor effectively acts as the head ofstate on diplomatic occasions. Akihito is the current Emperor of Japan. Naruhito, Crown Princeof Japan, stands as next in line to the throne. 44. Annual Festivals Annual Holidays Four Seasons Hanami - Cherry Blossom Viewing 45. Kimono Footwear 46. The Basics of Japanese Cuisine Popular Dishes Alcohol - Sake, Beer and more 47. 48. Haiku is a poetic form and a type of poetry from the Japanese culture. Haiku combinesform , content , and language in a meaningful, yet compact form. Many themes include nature,feelings, or experiences. Usually they use simple words and grammar . 49. The most common form for Haiku is three short lines. The first line usually contains five(5) syllables, the second line seven (7) syllables, and the third line contains five (5) syllables.Haiku doesnt rhyme. A Haiku must "paint" a mental image in the readers mind. 50. 51. First day of spring-- I keep thinking about the end of autumn. Spring rain leaking throughthe roof dripping from the wasps nest. 52. Fallen sick on a journey, In dreams I run wildly Over a withered moor. An old silentpond... A frog jumps into the pond, splash! Silence again. 53. The first soft snow! Enough to bend the leaves Of the jonquil low. In the cicadas cry Nosign can foretell How soon it must die. 54. No one travels Along this way but I, This autumn evening. In all the rains of May there isone thing not hidden - the bridge at Seta Bay. 55. The years first day thoughts and loneliness; the autumn dusk is here. Clouds appear andbring to men a chance to rest from looking at the moon. 56. Harvest moon: around the pond I wander and the night is gone. Povertys child - he startsto grind the rice, and gazes at the moon. 57. No blossoms and no moon, and he is drinking sake all alone! Wont you come and seeloneliness? Just one leaf from the kiri tree. Temple bells die out. The fragrant blossoms remain.A perfect evening! 58. Green frog, Is your body also freshly painted? Sick and feverish Glimpse of cherryblossoms Still shivering. 59. At the over-matured sushi, The Master Is full of regret. Pressing Sushi; After a while, Alonely feeling A whale! Down it goes, and more and more up goes its tail! 60. Covered with the flowers, Instantly Id like to die In this dream of ours! 61. In my old home which I forsook, the cherries are in bloom. A giant firefly: that way, thisway, that way, this -and it passes by. 62. Right at my feet - and when did you get here, snail? My grumbling wife - if only she werehere! This moon tonight... 63. A lovely thing to see: through the paper windows hole, the Galaxy. A man, just one - alsoa fly, just one - in the huge drawing room. A sudden shower falls - and naked I am riding on anaked horse!