Please choose one of the following two questions (1500 words, double spaced). Each question is comprehensive and comparative in nature. This means that you should combine the readings and lectures from several East Asian religious themes and take a holistic approach. It is expected that you refer to the compulsory readings. Make sure you balance description and analysis and be clear (assume the reader is a novice)..

1.The Tale of Genji and The Account of my Ten Foot Square Hut are both Classical Japanese sources that combine vocabulary, narratives and imagery from several East Asian Religious traditions. First, introduce the narrative of these two sources (no more than 200 words for each story). Second, choose and discuss two themes that run throughout these texts (there are more possible but please limit yourself to two).

2. The Night of the Milky Way Railway is a modern story intended for children. While written in Japan in the 20th century it stands at the crossroads of East Asian religions and intertextuality. First, summarize the narrative of the story (no more than 250 words). Second, choose themes that you thought had an important religious dimension and motivate your choice by referring to pre-modern sources discussed in class (ex.: Birth Stories, Lotus Sutra, Tale of Genji, Tales of Time Now Past, etc… )

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