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Ambiguous BodiesReading the Grotesque in Japanese Setsuwa Tales$
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Michelle Osterfeld Li

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804759755

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804759755.001.0001

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(p.234) Conclusion
Ambiguous Bodies
Stanford University Press

This chapter sums up the key findings of this study on the grotesque in setsuwa tales, which, it suggests, embodies the tensions between individuals and groups competing for power as well as between the dominant and the suppressed. It also argues that, unlike their western counterparts, the grotesque representations in setsuwa are connected to Buddhism and other Asian religions, and that they supplement the sense of beauty apparent in Japanese poetry, in Genji, and in other Japanese classics in which language regarding the body or bodily functions tends to be absent or indirect.

Keywords:   grotesque, setsuwa, Buddhism, Asian religion, Japanese poetry, Genji, bodily functions

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