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incidents and accidents, hints and allegations

wood cat
Kate kate_nepveu
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Tale of Genji, chapter 3

I overslept because I'm not feeling well, but chapter 3 is very short—can I write it up while my bagel toasts?

Chapter 3, "The Shell of the Locust": In which Genji crawls into bed with the wrong woman.

So Genji's all feeling "shock and shame" at being rejected by the woman in the last chapter, "do not know how I can go on living," all this. The boy he's with, the woman's brother, cries at this and not, apparently, at the notion that Genji prefers his sister to him.

The boy sneaks him back into the house, Genji spies on the woman and her stepdaughter (meanwhile thinking, "Hey, that stepdaughter isn't bad either"). Later he sneaks into the room where the two women are sleeping.

The text is a little ambiguous to me, but I think that the woman knows he's there and in a last-minute panic slips out. Anyway, she leaves, Genji crawls into bed with her stepdaughter and doesn't realize until he's there. Because he's Genji, he talks the s.d. into letting him stay, promises to write, etc. etc. And then of course never does.

He also sends a blowoff poem to the original woman, tells the boy that he's very nice and all but he doesn't know about their future because his family is so strange, and sulks. No-one's happy!

Primary thoughts: "Oh, are you really going to . . . yes, you are," and, it feels like we've wrapped up an arc, though I could be wrong.

And there's the toaster.

Edit: chapter 3 online; more Genji posts.

Oh, Genji, you scamp!

"Skank" is the word we've been using. =>

(Deleted comment)
As a read-along with others, it's fun (at the moment), actually. Join us!

. . . or not.

In the translation I'm reading, it's clear that the woman realizes something's up and slips away.

* Although I seem to have missed that the other woman was her stepdaughter, which is probably more me skimming fast and not the translation's fault.

I was initially unsure whether she knew it was *him*, but on re-reading that helpful online version you pointed out, yes, I agree that she did know it was him before she left.

I don't know how much the translations differ as regards various things - Rachel didn't mention that the woman was the governor's stepmother, but then she may not be as obsessed with figuring out exactly who's who and who's related to who as I am. (I wonder if that's a holdover from my anthropology days? When going into an area to do fieldwork, the first task you almost always do - partly because it's different for every culture and thus of interest and aprtly because it gives you something to do while you're trying to figure out how the hell you're going to study this group - you map out the relationships of everyone in the group to each other.)

I thought Rachel was reading the same translation I am. At least one of her quotes was identical.

At first I thought the boy was the governor's son, rather than his "foster uncle," so it's easy to get confused about these things.

I'm wondering - if I try to write down and map out all of the major players and their relationships to each other, will it be less complicated or more complicated than the Summers family tree in Marvel comics?

Can't say since I don't read Marvel comics, but if you do, please post your map!

Well let's just say that a whole lot of time travel, clones, reincarnations, and multiple marriages make the tree rather complicated. :)

I may just do the map thing. It'll make it easier for me to remember who's who, especially since the Heian culture refrained from names, for the most part (and Taylor says he's sticking as close as possible to the original in that regard, so women are referred to by the rank of a male relative, or by the pavilion where they live).