Sato Haruo’s Melancholy of the Countryside (“Denen no Yuutsu”) tells the story of a young couple moving from a bustling city to a quiet countryside. The author’s detailed descriptions of the countryside scenery and the garden flora reflect the changes going on inside the protagonist’s heart: unknowingly to him, the wilderness, the people, everything that he used to look forward to have lost their charm and become the root of all his problems. On the other hand, a related work Melancholy of the City (“Tokai no Yuutsu”) is written from a completely different perspective: there are very few descriptions of natural scenery; instead, the protagonist’s monologue constitutes the main portion of the novel.
As time changes, the meaning of “nature” is no longer confined to mountains, rivers, plants, and the like. According to Ookubo Takaki’s definition of “nature,” other than natural elements, “abstract” or “conceptual” notions, such as physical attractions or even feelings for others could be defined as “nature.”
In Melancholy of the Countryside (“Denen no Yuutsu”), why did the protagonist, having moved from the hustle and bustle of the city to the tranquil countryside, become depressed again? Through examining the people that the protagonist comes into contact with in the novel, and with references to the mind of the protagonist in Melancholy of the City (“Tokai no Yuutsu”), this paper aims to analyze “his” psychological state, clarify the meaning of “nature,” and define the relationship between humanity and “nature.”
KEYWORDS: Melancholy of the Countryside (“Denen no Yuutsu”), Melancholy of the City (“Tokai no Yuutsu”), Nature, Humanity, Others
佐藤春夫《田園之憂鬱》描寫年輕夫婦由吵雜喧嚷的都 會中心遷移到鄉間田野居住之情景,作者對周遭田野景緻、 庭園花草等做細膩描寫之同時,也步步反映主人翁內心之轉 變;原先充滿期待與憧憬的田野、周遭之人與物等不知何時 失去原有的魅力,而成為主人翁警戒煩惱的根源。姊妹作的 《都會之憂鬱》與《田園之憂鬱》視點大相逕庭,作品中對 自然景物之敘述不多,焦點鎖住登場人物,主角的獨白構成 全篇作品的主幹。
隨著時代之不同,「自然」所賦與之定意已不局限於山 水花草等,依據大久保喬樹對自然所下的定義,除了自然界 之山川草木之外,「抽象性的」「理念性的」概念,例如:肉 體的感受、甚或對他者的感情都可視為一種「自然」。
《田園之憂鬱》中,由喧嚷的都會遷居到寧靜祥和的田 野,主人翁為何再度感到憂鬱?本稿審視作品中主人翁接觸 之對象及其態度,分析主人翁之心理,參酌《都會之憂鬱》 中主人翁的內心世界,釐清「自然」之意義,並詮釋人與「自 然」之關係。