Thursday, June 29, 2006


Novelists have this amazing ability to turn a very small thing into a 10-page long prose. They also have this amazing ability to draw easily understood examples to illustrate the profound depths of human emotions. It was merely about an event of teaching his adored woman English and getting mad at her inability to master the English grammar form, "to be," but the main character in Tanizaki's narrative went into such details portraying the conflicting emotional responses when seeing the woman he loves both foolish yet vulnerable.

The more he hated her mental foolishness, the main character describes, the more he's drawn to her physical beauty. "If she cannot become a talented woman intellectually, she has at least excelled in becoming a stunning beauty ... Her physical beauty has sufficiently made up for her mental incapacity," the main character says.

Only later does he realize that the whole thing was a fraud. The beauty has intentionally made mistakes in order to witness the extreme degree of his explosive anger. Being scolded harshly, she secretly enjoys her talented scheme. When they first start to play chess, he deliberately loses the game in order to boost her confidence; only later does he realize that her developed confidence has carried her further to become a more supreme chess player. Though being on the defeated end now, the male character only falls more deeply in love with her.

Human emotions are such whimsical things that they flash through time and space in such quick moments that we experience each day yet we hardly come to realize what they really mean. Yet novelists capture that moment, sharply and beautifully, and explain to us the rationale behind and reveal at times the degree of extremity that such emotions may bring us. It makes us understand ourselves and life more, yet the more we understand, the more we are dumbfounded by the level of complexity.

Just enjoy the reading then, even at times we may never come to fully understand as we continue to live, even though we don't always know the purpose clearly. Sometimes it's the process that's the whole point of all.

梅ちゃん at 10:30:00 PM



at 7/10/06, 10:55 AM Blogger Chat Noir said...

I really like this piece and thanks for introducing this story, which really catches the hentai part of human mentality...

it's the process...i like the phrase...but where' and what's the end?


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