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Intermediate Japanese Language Learning with Dazai Osamu

Complimentary Japanese Reading Lessons From Maplopo Schoolhouse

Season ONE—水仙 (Page thirty four)


EP.34 Spotlight: Sixth & Seventh paragraph summaries, Dazai Osamu (太宰治), Daffodil (水仙)

Video file / Audio File / Online Intermediate Japanese Course

Sixth & Seventh Paragraph Summaries, EP34 Transcript | Intermediate and Advanced Japanese

[Maplopo Theme Music Playing]
Dazai continues, and he says that his lord  Tadanao is a woman of thirty-three. And,
perhaps, that his role in her story was  similar to that of the retainers who had spoken
and mocked the lord. And, so, he thinks  that this situation (he tells us) has become
even more and more unbearable  the more he thinks about it.
He goes on to tell us more about this woman—her  name is Kusada Shizuko. She’s the wife of Kusada
Sōbe. And, he was surprised to hear that one  day she suddenly said, “I’m a genius,” and ran
away from home. He tells us that his family and (the) Kusadas share no particular blood relation, and
yet they’ve been close… close going back maybe  two generations. It might sound nice, he says,
to say that… but, in reality, they were just  merely allowed to frequent the Kusada’s home—that
would probably be a better way to say  it. Their (uh, the Kusadas)… their social
status and the money that they possessed was far  greater than that possessed in his own family,
and so maybe it was more like his family was  asking a favor to just be in the presence of them.
Surely, it was similar to the relationship  that the lord had with his own retainers.
Sōbe, (the head of the family)  he tells us, is still young—
although he’s not so young—he’s  actually past the age of 40.
He went to Tokyo Imperial University, and  he graduated in the economics department.
After that, he spent a few years  somewhat gallivanting around France.
Shortly after returning to  Japan, Sōbe married Shizuko—
the only daughter in a family of distant relatives,  whose family later experienced financial ruin.
The relationship between Sōbe and Shizuko was  a good one… you could call it harmonious.
They had one daughter named Hariko. The  name was a bit of a derivation of Paris…
“Hariko” … “Paris.” Sōbe is a well put together  man… quite vogueish you might say. Tall… and
very handsome. He’s always smiling. He seems  to have a passion for art, and he collects many
western paintings. Among them, Degas. And a horse  racing painting that he’s particularly fond of.
He doesn’t really show any kind  of hint… and no behavior… that
exhibits this boasting of his high tastes, though.  He actually doesn’t talk about art at all, really.
Every day, he commutes to his bank. Overall, you  can say he’s a top-grade gentleman.
Six years ago the family patriarch died, and he soon rose to  the head of the family—and the family business.
[Outro Music Playing]

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