Kojiki : An Account of Ancient Matters (Translations from the Asian Classics)
Written in the early eighth century, the Kojiki is considered Japan's first literary and historical work. A compilation of myths, legends, songs, and genealogies, it recounts the birth of Japan's islands, reflecting the origins of Japanese civilization and future Shinto practice. The Kojiki provides insight into the lifestyle, religious beliefs, politics, and history of early Japan, and for centuries has shaped the nation's view of its past. This innovative rendition conveys the rich appeal of the Kojiki to a general readership by translating the names of characters to clarify their contribution to the narrative while also translating place names to give a vivid sense of the landscape the characters inhabit, as well as an understanding of where such places are today. Gustav Heldt's expert organization reflects the text's original sentence structure and repetitive rhythms, enhancing the reader's appreciation for its sophisticated style of storytelling.