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HOLY SHIT PEOPLE, IT'S NOT BAD ENOUGH WE'RE GETTING AN UTENA EXHIBITION RIGHT NOW

THEY. ARE. MAKING. A. NEW. MUSICAL. NEXT. YEAR. START LOSING YOUR SHIT RIGHT NOW

#1 | Back to Top07-29-2013 08:20:56 PM

zevrem
Banned
Registered: 03-23-2013
Posts: 387

ITT we talk about Utena's literary influences

There's Demian, but I haven't read that, so I'll talk about the one that stands out the most to me instead: Waiting for Godot. The gist of the play is that Vladimir and Estragon are two men waiting for a man named Godot to give them something, who seems to have some exalted position that is never really specified. (The End of the World) There are hints that Godot is abusive and cruel and unwilling to give people what they really want, (Ditto for Akio) but the main characters continue to wait for him even as they reflect on how much they are wasting their lives by doing so. This last point can be seen in the last episode when the Seitokai are waiting around the campfire and watching the final duel.

More broadly, every main character is waiting for some powerful figure to show up and give them what they want, which is the basic theme of Waiting for Godot. The Student Council has the End of the World and the duels. This is true even of Akio, the one who is seemingly most in control but is also the most painfully aware of the ultimate futility of his passive lifestyle. Utena has Dios, though she manages to overcome this in the end by actually succeeding at emulating what she admires about him.


The real purpose of elections is to make the people hate each other more than they hate their government.

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#2 | Back to Top07-29-2013 08:36:08 PM

zevrem
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Registered: 03-23-2013
Posts: 387

Re: ITT we talk about Utena's literary influences

My God school has made me forget just how much I adore literature.


The real purpose of elections is to make the people hate each other more than they hate their government.

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#3 | Back to Top08-03-2013 03:30:46 PM

whyknot
New Student
Registered: 07-21-2013
Posts: 8

Re: ITT we talk about Utena's literary influences

It's making me insanely giddy that you made this connection emot-smile))))) emot-rofl I love that play. It seems so obvious that you've pointed out. I've never noticed it before.

Here's a 15 page summary of Demian for those too lazy to read the actual thing emot-tongue
http://www.gss.ucsb.edu/projects/hesse/works/demian.pdf

It's clear that Ikuhara heavily drew inspiration from this. The character Demian reminds me a lot of Utena. “He was in every respect different from all the others, was entirely himself, with a personality all his own which made him noticeable even though he did his best not to be noticed; his manner and bearing was that of a prince disguised among farm boys, taking great pains to appear one of them.”

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#4 | Back to Top08-03-2013 05:02:07 PM

zevrem
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Registered: 03-23-2013
Posts: 387

Re: ITT we talk about Utena's literary influences

Just reading that outline, I feel that Utena has more in common thematically with WFG than Demian, but I'll have to actually read Demian to say that with more than 45% certainty.


The real purpose of elections is to make the people hate each other more than they hate their government.

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#5 | Back to Top08-03-2013 05:26:03 PM

Atropos
Atropos Turretslayer
From: Hampden College
Registered: 10-22-2011
Posts: 906

Re: ITT we talk about Utena's literary influences

I described Anthy as a Hessian protagonist before, but she's in far too deep to really fit the mold. Utena herself fits better, but has the self-confidence that Hesse's protagonists usually lack.

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#6 | Back to Top08-04-2013 01:01:31 AM

Decrescent Daytripper
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Registered: 04-09-2007
Posts: 2788

Re: ITT we talk about Utena's literary influences

The conflation of lover/mother and friend/boss in Demian seem to me more in play with SKU than direct character comparisons. As well as the sense of relevance being something you bring in, seeing what you are looking for as opposed to seeing what is "there."


My Brain is the Wakaba and Shiori Funtime Hour. With limited commercial interruption.

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