Sansho dayu legend

Question raised by: Sarah Thal

Discussants: Karl Friday, Lawrence Marceau, Michael Watson

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Date: Tue, 8 Jan 2002 08:55:13 -0600
From: Sarah Thal
Subject: English text of Sansho dayu legend?

Dear Colleagues,

As I finalize the syllabus for a class I'm teaching this spring on "Film and Literature and the Japanese Past," I have been trying tolocate an English translation of the Sansho dayu legend upon which Mori Ogai and later Mizoguchi Kenji based their versions. Might you know where I could find one? (I'd also be interested in where to find it in Japanese, as well.)

Thank you so much,

Sarah Thal
Assistant Professor
Department of History - MS42
Rice University
6100 Main Street
Houston, TX 77005-1892

Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 11:15:22 -0500
From: Karl Friday

There's a 1954 version produced by Daiei and directed by Mizoguchi Kenji, released in English under the title, "Sansho the Bailiff." Films Inc. has the distribution rights in the US, so they would probably be a good place to start looking for a video copy(as well as a source for renting a 16 mm print).


Karl Friday
Professor & Undergraduate Studies Coordinator
Dept. of History
University of Georgia
Athens, GA 30602

Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 18:04:41 -0500
From: Lawrence Marceau


The Sanshou dayuu narrative is most readily found in the _Sekkyou shuu_ volume in the Shinchou Nihon koten shuusei series. An English translation of a modern rendering of this story (done by Umehara Takeshi), called "Sansho Dayu," is found inPaul McCarthy, trans. _Lotus and Other Tales of Medieval Japan (Tuttle, 1996).

Good luck with your course!

Lawrence Marceau

Date: Wed, 9 Jan 2002 08:25:48 +0900
From: Michael Watson

Sarah Thal was asking about the original legend of Sansho dayu, i.e. Mori Ogai's source.

Sansho daiyu is first known as a sekkyo joruri, published 1639, but as a story goes back further, to the Muromachi period. One of "representative masterpieces" of sekkyobushi according to the Iwanami Nihon koten bungaku daijiten (p. 823 of Kan'yakuban).

Editions can be found in any of following
Toyo Bunko Sekkyobushi
Shincho nihon koten shusei Sekkyoshu
ed. Muroki Yataro.

The NKBD entry is also by Muroki also mentions other versions--as kibyoshi, yomihon, etc.

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