The role of the Japanese woman in modern society still retains many of the characteristics that it had in the late eighteenth century, when this novel takes place. And I doubt that any man would volunteer to mediate in their struggles. The book's nowhere near the level of I hardly made this sound appealing, did I. If this book ever became more popular on this site, I'd imagine the rating would tank and the reviews would be choked with mewling and puking about polemics and misandrists and god knows what other instances of fragile masculinity. Some of the good points we get from reading this book acclaimed as her best novel In the fall of 1782, the Imoses held a lavish farewell party for their daughter who was about to set off to get married. I find this novel difficult to rate because although the writing leaves something to be desired, especially in the awkwardly preachy final chapter, the material is fascinating. I did not know that Hanaoka Seishu was the "father" of general anesthesia or at least some consider him to be the father of anesthesia.
This book truly opened a window to another life in another time, and I was moved by what I witnessed. Well, isn't it so?. In fact Ariyoshi gives no clues as to what goes on in Seishu's mind. Reward or recognition came only indirectly, through the success of the male members of the family. Skimmed the last 20 pages.
Otsugi herself has come from a family that was also above Seishu's station. The story is based on the life of Hanaoka Seishu 1760-1835 , a provincial doctor who invented anae Mee's rating: 4. As a student she developed a deep interest in the theater, both modern drama and traditional Kabuki, and her own plays are widely performed in Japan. As it sometimes goes, it seemed a very interesting book to me, so I bought it. At 20 percent, this high of a mortality rate seems horrific to our modern society, and makes the measly.
Kae's life is depicted in a series of sketch-like chapters which each give an idea of the age, the surroundings, society, and the life of the Hanaoka's and then focus on the personal. And I was impressed. After Seishu comes home from Kyoto and his marriage to Kae is finally consummated, the loving relationship between Otsugi and Kae unravels as both women aspire to come first with the golden boy. But doctors at that time were in an odd 'category'. The use of Protozoan medication that causes contraction or Pitocin helps inducing labor and the practice of the Cesarean, which is a doctor-friendly technique, only reinforce the authority of doctors and the influence of their techniques on women bodies.
They think dying for Seishu deserves the highest honor. Her Kokotsu no hito The Twilight Years was published in 1972 and sold over a million copies in less than a year. Many of her novels have also been adapted for the stage, the cinema, and television. This is the fictionalized story of a remarkable doctor from Wakayama prefecture, the same province where the author hails from. At a glance, this seems strangely low.
However, despite the cast of supporting characters having only a fleeting presence throughout the novel, each one of them serves important functions, e. First published in 1966, The Doctor's Wife has quite an amazing premise. And then I did not read it, up to now. Upon her arrival, the lovely bride walked alone into the house, whereupon she was warmly greeted by an eager and impatient Otsugi, who led her by the hand into the main room. So basically Kae has admired Otsugi since she was a little girl, and was thrilled when she was invited to be her daughter-in-law.
Translations of her books have appeared throughout the world and include a French translation of The Doctor's Wife, which was a bestseller in France in 1981; The River Ki; The Twilight Years; Her Highness Princess Kazu, awarded the prestigious Mainichi Cultural Prize in 1979; and Kabuki Dancer. Hence, reading this novel makes me feel as though I am rafting down a river where the water is low and there's no current. I like the competition for Hanaoka Seishu's attention and affection between Otsugi the mother and Kae the wife. Thus, this novel is really two stories: on the one hand, the successful medical career of Hanaoka Seishu, the first doctor in the world to perform surgery for breast cancer under a general anesthetic; on the other hand, the lives of his wife and his mother, who supported him with stoic resignation, even to the extent of finally volunteering to be used as guinea pigs in his experiments. Honestly I nearly put the book down at this point as I hate reading that type of thing, but Kae was equally horrified, so I forced myself through it. Japanese literature is probably dominated by its male writers.
This fictionalized account of their life together is fascinating not only from a medical standpoint but also from a cultural, which is why I'm quickly becoming a fan of Ariyoshi's books. This can be determined by looking at such a list compiled by the Central Intelligence Agency. Being from an anesthesiology department I was always thought it was a Dr. In our discussions, I suggested that the above behaviors were due to their immense love for Umpei and therefore they did not mind sacrificing themselves for the sake of his achievement. The narrative of The Doctor's Wife consists of two intertwined parts. At first, they were like mother and daughter but as Seishu finishes medical school and comes back from Kyoto, the relationship between Otsugi and Kae starts to fall apart. Both women made huge sacrifices and were willing to take risks, as much from love for Seishu and interesting in advancing medicine, as for personal reasons of rivalry and seeking recognition.
Throughout the work, Katsu illustrates his various dealings and communications with peasants, merchants, artisans and fellow samurai. He directs his energy and attention to his scientific research, and the household revolves around him and his medical pursuits. A good portion of the book is dedicated to the relationship between Kae and her mother in law. The experimentation apparently caused his wife to go blind. As long as there are men and women side by side on this earth, I wouldn't want to be reborn as a woman into such a world.