Questions from Patriotism : LUSENET : nonwesternlit : One Thread

1. On their homeymoon night, Shinji laid the sword in front of him and asked Reiko if she was "steadfast" in her resolve to accept his death because as a soldier death coul happen at any time. She placed a dagger in front of her. What is the meaning of the display of the sword and dagger? Why didn't Shinju mention death before the marriage?

2. Why do you think Shinji wanted Reiko to witness his death? Did he know whe was going to take her own life also?

3. With his entrails being expelled from his body from the first suicidal slash, Shinji goes even further by cutting sideways into his abdomen and cutting his own throat. Why did he decide on such a brutal death? Is suicide an honorable death in Japanese culture?

4. After witnessing Shinji's death, Reiko does her face completely in make-up, dresses in a white Kimono and then stepts off a one foot distance from his body before taking her own life. What is the significance of all of this formality and seeeming ritual?

5. Before killing herself, Reiko struggles with the decision of whether to lock the door to the room or leave it unlocked. What is the significance of this decision?

6. Why did the Author focus so much detail on Shinji's death, and not as much detain on the death of Reiko? Were both honorable suicides?

These were the questions our group came up with over the book Patriotism. Thanks Arelda, Mary, Sue and Paula

-- Anonymous, May 01, 2000


2. Shinji being a soldier, it was an honorable thing to watch his death in his eyes, and i do believe he knew Reiko would take her life also. She showed him the list of address for all her keepsakes to go.

5. She wanted to unlock the door because the thought of wanting people to find them right away was important, not days after the incident when their bodies would be swollen and smelly.

-- Anonymous, August 01, 2000

An answer to the 6th question, Shinji was a samari(SP) and suicide was honorable to them and with the authro being a warrior himself and a poltical man, he was using the novel as an outlet of his poltical beliefs.

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

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