Reflect on The Tale of Genji’s wish list for a perfect wife. What does this portrait of the perfect wife reveal about the men who are creating the list?
Just like in the modern masculine perception of the perfect wife, the standards during the Heian era differed based on the man. In Murasaki’s tale of Genji, the author includes a full-chapter conversation of four men, with the renowned Genji included, concerning their ideal women (Bowring 2003). Reflecting on this tale, it is worth indicating that portrait of the perfect wife discloses several details concerning the men creating the list. Genji, who is lead character, has been portrayed as the most handsome man ever, excelling highly on painting, writing poetry, and most importantly in courtship. The men in the story did not show much focus on the physical beauty of women, but were thrilled by in the hair of a woman, especially the long thick hair. These men further found interest in women of perfect upbringing, especially those excellent at calligraphy and poetry. On top of that, a woman of apt dress code found great favor in men’s eyes.
It is obvious that these men focused so much on pursuance of women considering they had so much free time as they had minimal