KokoroBook - 2010
The great Japanese author’s most famous novel, in its first new English translation in half a century
No collection of Japanese literature is complete without Natsume Soseki's Kokoro, his most famous novel and the last he completed before his death. Published here in the first new translation in more than fifty years, Kokoro—meaning "heart"—is the story of a subtle and poignant friendship between two unnamed characters, a young man and an enigmatic elder whom he calls "Sensei." Haunted by tragic secrets that have cast a long shadow over his life, Sensei slowly opens up to his young disciple, confessing indiscretions from his own student days that have left him reeling with guilt, and revealing, in the seemingly unbridgeable chasm between his moral anguish and his student's struggle to understand it, the profound cultural shift from one generation to the next that characterized Japan in the early twentieth century.
Baker & Taylor
Haunted by tragic secrets, Sensei slowly opens up to his young disciple, confessing indiscretions from his own student days that have left him reeling with guilt.
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My wife apparently interpreted my state of mind as a kind of ennui, a slackness of spirit that came from not having to worry about day-to-day survival. This was understandable. Her mother had enough money to allow them both to make do and my own financial situation meant meant I had no need to work. I had always taken money for granted, I admit. But the main reason for my immobility lay quite elsewhere. True enough, my uncle's betrayal had made me fiercely determined never to be beholden to anyone again - but back then my distrust of others had only reinforced my sense of self. The world might be rotten, I felt, but at least I am a man of integrity. But this faith in myself had been shattered on account of K. I suddenly understood that I was no different from my uncle, and the knowledge made me reel. What could I do? Others were already repulsive to me, and now I was repulsive even to myself. p.225
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