The edition of Rashomon is a collection of six short stories: "In a Grove," "Rashomon," "Yam Gruel," "The Martyr," "Kesa and Morito," "and "The Dragon." The first two are apparently the short stories on which Kurosawa's famous film, "Rashomon," is based.
Short stories are not my usual cup of tea; however, I greatly enjoyed these. They are clearly older stories, but Akutagawa is extremely talented at evoking emotion in the reader. Of the six stories, "Yam Gruel" was my favourite. "In a Grove" and "Kesa and Morito" consider the notion of truth by observing a story from multiple perspectives, and "Rashomon" closely looks at empathy, but "Yam Gruel" was the most successful in portraying a character for whom my heart moved.
Of the stories, my least favourite was "The Martyr." I won't give much away from the story, except to say that the notion of martyrdom bothers me -- a community singing the praises for someone whom they have caused great suffering isn't particularly useful once that person has passed. I hope that this is the emotion that Akutagawa intended to evoke.
These stories aren't plot-driven, and they're not for someone who wants a quick hit of adrenaline. I recommend them to anyone who is interested in literary classics, and to those who enjoy slower stories that drive the reader to reflection.
Started: January 8, 2016
Finished: January 8, 2016
- Paperback: 48 pages
- Publisher: Blurb (23 May 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1388420546
- ISBN-13: 978-1388420543
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 0.3 x 22.9 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 40.8 g
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