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Sanshirō

de Natsume Soseki

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Séries: Soseki's First Trilogy (book 1)

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4161146,390 (3.82)1 / 28
One of Soseki's most beloved works of fiction, the novel depicts the 23-year-old Sanshiro leaving the sleepy countryside for the first time in his life to experience the constantly moving 'real world' of Tokyo, its women and university. In the subtle tension between our appreciation of Soseki's lively humour and our awareness of Sanshiro's doomed innocence, the novel comes to life. Sanshiro is also penetrating social and cultural commentary.… (mais)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 11 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Commonly referred to as a coming-of-age novel, this is a story about Sanshiro Ogawa, who at 22 is a young man caught between two very different worlds. Fresh from the country and a very traditional culture he enters Tokyo University at a time of change in Japan, with Western influences and cultural modernisation.

His conventional upbringing and inexperience result in his self-confidence being very fragile, he is referred to as a coward and a stray lamb, which he is initially as it is all very new and intimidating. He observes the new world around him and begins to adapt to it. It is a fairly typical transition, from being known at home, to being one of many in a new place.

Although this is set in Japan, I felt many of the feelings experienced by Sanshiro are experienced by many students as they leave school and enter University.

There is a calmness and distance to the writing, which I find appealing and different. The writer does not judge Sanshiro, merely states what he experiences. In a similar way Sanshiro observes what is happening but doesn’t react, just absorbs it.

The story is very mundane, nothing much happens. Sanshiro is let down by a new friend, he falls in love, but he does nothing, merely feeling uncomfortable and doesn’t know how he is expected to react. ( )
  Matacabras | Jun 5, 2021 |
Sanshiro moves to start studying at the university where he remains as a lost sheep, a name given to him by Mineko, the beautiful young woman with whom he falls in love.

The story revolves around Sanshiro's experiences in modern Tokyo in the early twentieth century and his frustrations surrounding Mineko, a seemingly modern young woman who shows a lot of freedom and independence from ancient values.

Sanshiro is unable to learn, speak and react. Coming from rural and traditional life with a strong set of values ​​and beliefs, but naivety about the possibility of change and inability to distinguish the real from the false. ( )
  Marcos_Augusto | Feb 24, 2021 |
I suspect I want to like this book more than I do, and I suspect that's not Soseki's fault. It's a campus novel set in Japan, with nice "what is the point of modern Japan?" stuff thrown in. The characters are fun (rather than 'rounded' or whatever), the story is mild. There's political satire, and lightly ironic first-love, and wonderful provincial-goes-to-the-big-smoke stuff. If someone turned this into a movie, I'd be first in line at the cinema (note: I haven't been the cinema in three years at least).

And yet I had to force myself through it, because the style is entirely utilitarian. There are metaphors and analogies and so on, but there's nothing for your ears, and not much for your mind, in the individual sentences. Is this Soseki's fault? I don't know. It may well be the translator's, though he's quite distinguished.

Perhaps I'll re-read it in a few years and, more aware of what I'm getting, enjoy it even more--because I really did enjoy it. ( )
  stillatim | Oct 23, 2020 |
Sanshirō seems to be one of Sōseki's most popular novels, to the extent that its protagonist now has a pond at Tokyo University and a Kyushu railway station named after him (which presumably makes him the Japanese Waverley!). It's not hard to see why people like it - it's a warm, affectionate account of a provincial young man's first term as a student in the big city. Not a coming-of-age novel, more a putting-off-growing-up story, really, but full of charming detail and a very convincing account of what it's like to be a shy young man suddenly confronted with the choices of adult life (none of which Sanshirō chooses to take, of course...). He almost falls in love, he almost gets into money problems, he almost gets involved in campus politics, but he's still somehow protected from all those things by a cloud of youthful innocence. Much less twee than it sounds, and very enjoyable.

Sanshirō went to the joint lecture for all literature students from five to six o'clock. It was too dark for taking notes, too early to turn on the lights. This was the hour when the depths of the great zelkova tree outside the high, narrow windows began to turn black. Inside the hall, the faces of the students and the lecturer were equally indistinct, which made everything somehow mystical, like eating a bean jam bun in the dark. He found it strangely pleasant that he could not understand the lecture. As he listened, cheek in hand, his senses became dulled, and he began to drift off. This was the very thing, he felt, that made lectures worthwhile.

One interesting feature of the Rubin translation is that it marks the breaks between the instalments from when the novel was originally published as a newspaper serial - it makes you realise how different it must have been experiencing this 230-page novel over a period of four months in chunks of 2-3 pages, rather than galloping through it in a couple of days as most modern readers would.

Haruki Murakami's introduction to the Penguin Classics edition is a warm and charming account of Murakami's time as a struggling young writer, so poor that at times he was even obliged to resort to reading books from his wife's shelves, but doesn't actually tell us anything relevant about Sanshirō. Fortunately Rubin compensates for this lacuna in a "Translator's Note" that serves as the real introduction, filling us in on the historical background and the real campus politics behind the story. ( )
  thorold | May 1, 2018 |
The reader meets Ogawa Sanshirō on the train taking him to Tokyo. The young man has just graduated from his provincial college and is headed to Tokyo Imperial University, and life in the big city. It’s 1907; Japan is experiencing an era of rapid change and modernization. Western ideas and influences are all the rage and social roles are changing. Sanshirō gets his first encounter with this new milieu even before he reaches Tokyo. He finds himself fending off the amorous advances of a pretty young woman about his age. It’s very embarrassing. Nothing like this every happened at home. To make it worse, when they part she calmly remarks, “You’re quite a coward, aren’t you?”

Actually, he isn’t so much afraid, as reserved. Sanshirō keeps steadily on task, moving ahead with his studies, admiring the beauty in his new and often perplexing environment, and trying to make some sense of it all. In the introduction contemporary author Murakami notes how different this bildungsroman is from its European models because of Sanshirō’s detachment, which to Western readers may come across as indecisive, but to Japanese readers is, strangely comfortable.”

Nevertheless, the book is a skillfully written story of a time and place full of delights, disappointments, and promise. It’s also a place populated by a diverse group of interesting characters all with their own eccentricities and ways of looking at the world. ( )
  MaowangVater | Jul 31, 2017 |
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Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Natsume Sosekiautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Murakami, HarukiIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Rubin, JayTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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One of Soseki's most beloved works of fiction, the novel depicts the 23-year-old Sanshiro leaving the sleepy countryside for the first time in his life to experience the constantly moving 'real world' of Tokyo, its women and university. In the subtle tension between our appreciation of Soseki's lively humour and our awareness of Sanshiro's doomed innocence, the novel comes to life. Sanshiro is also penetrating social and cultural commentary.

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