「義理」 Giri

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「義理」Giri

Obliigation, Duty

In Japanese ethics it is very important to be aware of, and to repay, one’s obligations (giri) to others.

The conflict between obligation and personal feeling (ninjo) is a popular theme in traditional performing arts like kabuki or bunraku puppet theater.

A classic giri-ninjyo theme might be a daughter who became engaged to one man to fulfill her duty toward her father, while her true affections were directed at another man.

On a more everyday note, giri can also be seen in rituals like giving gifts or visiting clients at the year-end.

 

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