Book Announcement: Eight Dogs, or “Hakkenden” Part One—An Ill-Considered Jest

Eight Dogs, or “Hakkenden”
Part One—An Ill-Considered Jest

by Kyokutei Bakin
Translated by Glynne Walley

Kyokutei Bakin’s Nansō Satomi hakkenden is one of the monuments of Japanese literature. This multigenerational samurai saga was one of the most popular and influential books of the nineteenth century and has been adapted many times into film, television, fiction, and comics.

An Ill-Considered Jest, the first part of Hakkenden, tells the story of the Satomi clan patriarch Yoshizane and his daughter Princess Fuse. An ill-advised comment forces Yoshizane to betroth his daughter to the family dog, creating a supernatural union that ultimately produces the Eight Dog Warriors. Princess Fuse’s heroic and tragic sacrifice, and her strength, intelligence, and self-determination throughout, render her an immortal character within Japanese fiction.

Eight Dogs is the culmination of centuries of premodern Japanese tale-telling, combining aspects of historical romance, fantasy, Tokugawa-era popular fiction, and Chinese vernacular stories. Glynne Walley’s lively translation conveys the witty and colorful prose of the original, producing a faithful and entertaining edition of this important literary classic.

For more information:

About Paula

Paula lives in the vortex of academic life. She studies medieval Japanese history.
This entry was posted in announcements, culture and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s