Sample Essay

Maui’s character as drawn in the autobiography is representative of the Samurais in the Tokugawa era with its emphasis on the economic instability in which the whole samurai class was thrust into by the policies of the government and the way the last samurai, Maui, survived with his carefree and rebellious personality. The portrait of Maui as a samurai is similar to the actual condition of the samurais in that era while some historians and writers have emphasized on the glory of Tokugawa period at the expense of the samurais.

‘Maui’s Story’ is an autobiography of a Samurai who in the book reflects and represent the late Tokugawa era, a 200 year long period of peace in Japan from 16th century till 18th century, in which he lived. The narrator or the author, Koki chi or Maui, describes himself honestly whatever the flaws in his character are in order to throw light on the contradiction between the original roles of a Samurai and how it was declined. The Samurai was a clan of warriors in Japan that came to rise as a result of incessant spells of civil war in order to gain control of the country. The Samurai adhered to the code Bushido (the way of the warrior) that demanded fidelity in its entirety to the lord of the clan. Born as a Samurai, Maui led a life that contrasted the values and ideals of a Samurai warrior that involved cheating, stealing, lying and running protection racket which were against the pride of the Samurais.

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