Diary of Lady Murasaki

For this part of class we looked at the Diary of Lady Murasaki. Numerous themes can be found throughout this work. For this section please respond to two of the following questions in the form of a short paragraph. Please answer just one of the questions here, and the second question in the following “essay question.” The questions will be repeated. You must answer two different questions (you will not receive full credit if you answer the same question twice).

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1. Ritual is an important part of everyone’s life, but ritual is not necessarily part of religion. What are some of the rituals that occur in Murasaki’s diary?

2. Murasaki is concerned about what kinds of things within the court? How does she describe them?

3. Over the course of these pages, we find Murasaki increasingly depressed. What is the source of this depression? (pp. 33-35)

4. What role does religion seem to play in the life of the Japanese of Murasaki’s time? What role does religion play in Murasaki’s daily musings?