Manual The Pillow Book

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The Pillow Book by Sei Shonagon: | unualexalog.gq: Books

She is even speaking of the man as the one who is seducing the lady and therefore, clearly victimizes women. She gives different behaviour codes for men and women though; if a couple splits up, it suits the man to show to the woman that he is sorry, while the woman can show him the cold shoulder without being called heartless in her opinion PB, Overall, Sei Shonagon describes secret romances with men as very pleasant. This demonstrates how important relationships between men and women in the daily court life are to her. K Q Kati Neubauer Author. Add to cart. Sign in to write a comment.

Read the ebook. Nagiko seeks a lover who can match her desire for carnal pleasure with her admiration for poetry and calligraphy. The roots of this obsession lie in her youth in Kyoto , when her father would write characters of good fortune on her face. Nagiko also learns around this time that her father is in thrall to his publisher, "Yaji-san", who demands sexual favours from her father in exchange for publishing his work.

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The publisher arranges Nagiko's wedding to his young apprentice. Her husband, an expert archer, resents Nagiko's love for books and her desire to read, in spite of his apprenticeship. He also refuses to indulge in her desires for pleasure, refusing to write on her body. When he discovers and reads Nagiko's pillow book, he is extremely resentful, setting it on fire and thus setting fire to their marital home, an event which Nagiko describes to be the 'first major fire of [her] life.

Hiding from her husband, Nagiko moves to Hong Kong. In spite of her aversion to the practice, she learns how to type to find work. Outside her apartment, a group of activists regularly protest the publishing industry for the depletion of forests due to the need to make paper.

After working as a secretary in the office of a Japanese fashion designer for a while, Nagiko's employer takes a liking to her and makes her one of his models. As a successful fashion model, Nagiko hires a maid, as she now finally has the opportunity to explore her sexual desires of being written on. However, after several affairs, she feels dissatisfied with them all: either they have great penmanship and are lousy lovers, or vice versa. Intrigued by his knowledge, they go to a private space where she has Jerome write on her body in various languages.

In spite of her interest, Nagiko dislikes Jerome's handwriting and orders him out. Jerome totally shocks Nagiko, however, when he asks her to teach him, offering her to write on his body. Opening his shirt, he offers Nagiko to "Use my body like the pages of a book. Of your book! Nagiko has never considered this aspect in her desires before: her lovers always write on her body.

When she backs out and runs, Jerome laughs at her. Frightened but very intrigued by Jerome's suggestion, Nagiko has several one-night stands in which she experiments writing on their bodies. One of the activists, admirer Hoki, a Japanese photographer who adores her, begs Nagiko to take him as a lover. She explains she can't, as his skin's no good for writing: whenever she writes on him, the ink smears and runs.

The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon

Hoki, not wanting Nagiko to keep carrying on like she is, suggests she try writing a book, offering to take it to a renowned publisher he freelances for. Nagiko likes this idea and writes her first book. Nagiko's book is returned, being told the book is "not worth the paper it's written on! Insulted, Nagiko follows the address on the envelope to confront the publisher. Nagiko is shocked to discover that the publisher who rejected her work is in fact Yaji-san, her father's old publisher.

What's more, the publisher has a young lover: Jerome. Devising a plan, Nagiko decides that she will get to the publisher through Jerome. Meeting up with Jerome again, Nagiko discovers he has learned a few more languages, and his penmanship has greatly improved. Even when he is dressed, he still lingers, vaguely pretending to be fastening his sash. Presently he raises the lattice, and the two lovers stand together by the side door while he tells her how he dreads the coming day, which will keep them apart; then he slips away.

The lady watches him go, and this moment of parting will remain among her most charming memories. Sparrows feeding their young. To pass a place where babies are playing. To sleep in a room where some fine incense has been burnt. To notice that one's elegant Chinese mirror has become a little cloudy. To see a gentleman stop his carriage before one's gate and instruct his attendants to announce his arrival. To wash one's hair, make one's toilet, and put on scented robes; even if not a soul sees one, these preparations still produce an inner pleasure.


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It is night and one is expecting a visitor. Suddenly one is startled by the sound of raindrops, which the wind blows against the shutters. Dried hollyhock.

To find a piece of deep violet or grape-coloured material that has been pressed between the pages of a notebook. It is a rainy day and one is feeling bored. To pass the time, one starts looking through some old papers. And then one comes across the letters of a man one used to love. Chinese brocade. A sword with a decorated scabbard. The grain of the wood in a Buddhist statue.

Long flowering branches of beautifully coloured wisteria entwined about a pine tree.

The “Pillow Book” — classical literature which will not bore you

Despite his low station, a Chamberlain of the Sixth Rank is a splendid thing. To think that he is allowed yellowish-green robes of figured material and cloth that even young noblemen of the finest families are forbidden to wear! A mere Assistant or Subordinate Official in the Emperor's Private Office, who is the son of a commoner and who has gone completely unnoticed while serving under gentlemen of rank with official posts, becomes splendid beyond words after being appointed Chamberlain.

One has gone to a house and asked to see someone; but the wrong person appears, thinking that it is he who is wanted; this is especially awkward if one has brought a present. One has allowed oneself to speak badly about someone without really intending to do so; a young child who has overheard it all goes and repeats what one has said in front of the person in question. Someone sobs out a pathetic story. One is deeply moved; but it so happens that not a single tear comes to one's eyes, most awkward.

Though one makes one's face look as if one's going to cry, it is no use: not a single tear will come.

The Pillow Book part 1 - Brody Neuenschwander

Yet there are times when, having heard something happy, one feels the tears streaming out. An earthen cup. A new metal bowl. A rush mat. The play of the light on water as one pours it into a vessel. A new wooden chest. A rat's nest. Someone who is late in washing his hands in the morning.

The Pillow Book

White snivel, and children who sniffle as they walk. The containers used for oil. Little sparrows. A person who does not bathe for a long time even though the weather is hot. All faded clothes give me an unclean feeling, especially those that have glossy colours. Especially Delightful Is the First Day Especially delightful is the first day of the First Month, when the mists so often shroud the sky.

Adorable Things The face of a child drawn on a melon. When I Make Myself Imagine When I make myself imagine what it is like to be one of those women who live at home, faithfully serving their husbands, women who have not a single exciting prospect in life yet who believe that they are perfectly happy, I am filled with scorn.

Depressing Things A dog howling in the daytime. Persistent rain on the last day of the year. One has been observing a period of fast, but neglects it for just one day: most depressing.

The Pillow Book of Sei Shōnagon

Hateful Things One is in a hurry to leave, but one's visitor keeps chattering away. The sound of dogs when they bark for a long time in chorus is ominous and hateful. Indeed, one's attachment to a man depends largely on the elegance of his leave-taking. Last year's paper fan. A night with a clear moon.


  • Buy The Pillow Book - Microsoft Store;
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  • Bibliography.
  • Discours à l’Académie française (French Edition).
  • Weeping Underwater Looks a lot Like Laughter.
  • The Pillow Book by Sei Shōnagon.
  • Gender issues in the Pillow Book and the Essays in Idleness.
  • Splendid Things Chinese brocade. Awkward Things One has gone to a house and asked to see someone; but the wrong person appears, thinking that it is he who is wanted; this is especially awkward if one has brought a present.