Living Age Volume 226

Living Age Volume 226

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1900 edition. Excerpt: ...of the soldier to his captain, the wife to her husband, the child to its parents. Even while it disorganized the country, feudalism, aided by-the nature of the people, created there no end of distinct and animated organisms. Filial piety, personal loyalty, obedience, the sacrifice of the individual to the interests of the fief, were carried to so fanciful an extreme that the sublime itself was cheapened. Our own ancient history reveals no such transports of self-sacrifice and stoicism. But the very slight effort which superhuman virtue seems to have cost these heroes, rather impairs its beauty to my mind. I can understand one father's immolating his own child, to save the child of his prince, but that this example should become the basis of a school, this atrocious abnegation of self a common practice, that a strict devotion to worldly obligations should come to demand as much bloodshed as the altars of the gods themselves--here I detect the invincible tendency of the Japanese mind to push a simple idea to the point of absurdity and engraft monstrous fantasies upon natural instincts. The Japanese have wit, but they are thoughtless. In the absence of material they underiake to provide it. They work furiously over elementary ideas; but the deductions which they draw therefrom are so grotesque that they impoverish rather than develop them. They hollow them out, work them over, carve, chisel, stipple them, until they become so strange as to be no longer recognizable. But the ideas are elementary still. Their morality is like their houses--absolutely primitive in structure, but overlaid by a thousand petty devices, an infinitude of detailslike their apartments, where a fanciful art admires itself upon a humble matting, or shines over...
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Product details

  • Paperback | 470 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 24mm | 830g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236991478
  • 9781236991478