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Travels with a Writing Brush Reviews

Travels with a Writing Brush by Meredith McKinney

Travels with a Writing Brush: Classical Japanese Travel Writing from the Manyoshu to Basho

Meredith McKinney

Score pending

1 review

Imprint: Penguin Classics
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publication date: 7 Nov 2019
ISBN: 9780241310878

A rich, exquisite and original anthology that illuminates Japanese travel writing over a thousand years.

4 stars out of 5
PD Smith
14 Nov 2019

"this is a remarkable work filled with wonderful vignettes of Japanese life and sensibility"

In this delightful anthology, McKinney traces the evolution of travel writing in Japan through diaries, stories, drama and poetry. She reveals how a distinctive poetics of travel emerged across more than a thousand years of literary history, very different from that of the west. She begins with the Manyōshū, Japan’s first extant work of literature, which includes an austerely beautiful example of classical poetry by an eighth-century Buddhist monk, Sami Mansei: “To what shall I compare / this world? / It is like a boat at daybreak / rowing away and gone / leaving no trace.”