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Lovable LosersThe Heike in Action and Memory$
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Mikael S. Adolphson and Anne Commons

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780824846756

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824846756.001.0001

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Envisioning the Classics

Envisioning the Classics

The Tale of the Heike in Edo-Period Comic Books

Chapter:
(p.206) Chapter Eleven Envisioning the Classics
Source:
Lovable Losers
Author(s):

Adam L. Kern

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824846756.003.0011

This essay deals with representations of the Heike in the Tokugawa period (1600-1868), focusing particularly on images and descriptions of the Heike in comicbooks intended for a broad audience. The author shows that the “Heike world” was an essential element of popular culture in the mid-Tokugawa period, and generally involved sympathetic portrayals of the Heike while casting the Seiwa Genji as villains, a dynamic that can be understood as an implicit criticism of the Tokugawa regime. The author also argues that sound played as crucial a role as vision in Tokugawa narratives, demonstrating this through an analysis of the figure of the blinded Taira no Kagekiyo (?-1184).

Keywords:   Taira no Kagekiyo, Taira no Tadanori, Heike monogatari, kusazōshi, Tokugawa bakufu, blindness

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