The Poetry of Dialogue: Kanshi, Haiku and Media in Meiji Japan, 1870-1900

Dublin Core


The Poetry of Dialogue: Kanshi, Haiku and Media in Meiji Japan, 1870-1900


Haiku, Japanese--history and criticism
Haiku--theses and dissertations


ABSTRACT: This dissertation examines the influence of ‘poetic sociality’ during Japan’s Meiji period (1867-1912).
‘Poetic sociality’ denotes a range of practices within poetic composition that depend upon social interaction among individuals , most importantly the tendency
to practice poetry as a group activity, pedagogical practices such as mutual critique and the master -disciple relationship, and the exchange among individual poets of textually linked forms of verse.
Under the influence of modern European notions
of literature, during the late Meiji period both prose fiction and the idea of literature as originating in the subjectivity of the individual assumed hegemonic status. Although often noted as a major characteristic of pre-modern poetry, poetic sociality
continued to be enormously influential in the literary and social activities of 19th century Japanese intellectuals despite the rise of prose fiction during
late Meiji and was fundamental to the way in which poetry was written, discussed and circulated One reason for this was the growth of a mass -circulation print media from early Meiji onward , which provided new venues for the publication of poetry and enabled the expression of poetic sociality across distance and outside of face-to-face gatherings.. With oetic exchange increasingly taking
place through newspapers and literary journals poetic sociality acquired a new and openly political aspect
. Poetic exchanges among journalists and readers served in many cases as vehicles for discussion of political topics such as governmental corruption, international relations and environmental disasters, an aspect of Meiji-era poetry that has received comparatively little attention. .....The second half of the dissertation focuses on the rise of the so-called “new haiku” from 1892 onward, showing, in Chapter Three, how poets used haiku in the newspapers of the 1890s as a vehicle for exchanging views on political matters, a function not traditionally associated with the genre.


Tuck, Robert


Columbia University




All rights reserved. This thesis is republished here with the kind permission of the author.