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The Humanities Conference 2003

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Presentation Details

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The Meaning of Greece in the Relationship between Yukio Mishima and Oscar Wilde

Kazuki Takada.


Amongst Western authors, Oscar Wilde was one of the most influential for Yukio Mishima. For example, 'Salome', the work of Wilde's that left the strongest impression on Mishima. However, although a relationship between the two has been indicated, insufficient studies make it difficult to say what the connection is. Both of them visited Greece and it might bring the important turning points for them. Using their experiences of visiting Greece, as a key, this presentation aims to highlight their relationship from a new angle. First of all, influences of Greece on Wilde will be researched. Until now, it has been pointed out that Greece pulled him back from the interest in Catholicism to the beauty of Hellenism. In this presentation, reviewing this issue with his Irish background, another significance of Greece will be pointed out. Then, the situation of Mishima will be stated. Through his work 'The Sound of Waves' (1954), what he understood from Greece, and which direction he choose after visiting Greece will be analysed.

Finally, considering the meaning of Greece in their thoughts, Mishima's attitude towards Wilde will be investigated. In the process, Mishima's characteristics as an author will be clarified. It will emerge that although Mishima was attracted by Wilde, their relationship was under tension.

Presenters

Kazuki Takada  (United Kingdom)
Ph.D. Student
East Asian Studies
The University of Edinburgh

I graduated from Waseda University and Waseda Graduate School, Tokyo Japan.

Keywords
  • Yukio Mishima
  • Oscar Wilde
  • Experiences of visiting Greece
  • 'The Sound of Waves'
  • Views of Art



(30 min Conference Paper, English)