Yukio Mishima

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What type of philosopher is Yukio Mishima?

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I think that some level of clarification is needed here.  The first would be that Mishima does not set out to be a philosopher.  I see him as an artist who was able to embrace different philosophical ideas in his work.  It is important to not identify him as a philosopher, I feel, because it would force him to embrace the discipline in logic and ideas as a philosopher, which is antithetical to Mishima's basic idea that the artist can create their own sense of self and recreate it as they see fit.  Mishima embraced elements of Classicism in his work.  His reveling in physical beauty in works like Kyoko's House, and to a lesser extent, The Temple of the Golden Pavilion, reflect this.  The recognition of a definite notion of beauty and a strict definition of it is a part of the Classicism that he embraces.  In works like, Patriotism and Runaway Horses, there is a strong emphasis on militarism, and the notion that the military life is one where happiness is evident and being can be defined.  This can also be seen in his own life and death, where military rule was seen as something glorious.  Naturally, there is a Postmodern element to his life and work as he refused to accept one basic definition of self and of work.  Mishima was an advocate of the idea that there can be multiple criteria used to define epistemology, making him a postmodern thinker at his core.

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