In today’s society, men have always been recognized for their heroic acts of giving up their lives in honor to their country. However, in seeing death as an honorable act, one must understand patriotism and pride. In the story Patriotism by Yukio Mishima, Lieutenant Shinji Takeyama and his wife Reiko are Newlyweds and happily married. On the day of their honeymoon, the Lieutenant having his sword laid beside him, tested Reiko’s his wife, to see if she too would die with him at the time he was to die. Reiko then without a word takes out her dagger and puts it before her, just as her husband had laid his sword. By that, her husband knew that she was willing and ready to die with him. As the months went by, Lieutenant Shinji was given orders to exterminate his closest colleagues, due to the fact that they were mutineers and attacked the imperial troops. Lieutenant Shinji, not wanting to kill his friends or go against the allegiance to his Emperor, then decides to commit suicide by taking his sword and disemboweled himself. After his wife witnesses his death, as he requested, she then does the same and kills herself as well. Throughout the story, Mishima introduces imagery, tone and symbolism, to show that love of the government and love of family are almost inseparable. However, loyalty to the government should always come first.
Since Lieutenant Shinji loved his country, he made an oath to fight with his government. His honor depended on his commitment to his government. He would fight to death if he had to, whenever necessary to protect his government. Through imagery, Yukio Mishima gives the readers the sight of his characters examples of loyalty towards their government. In Patriotism, lieutenant Shinji always showed love and honor for his government. Even on the day of his wedding, he expressed his loyalty to his imperial forces. Mishima illustrates, “the lieutenant, majestic in military uniform, stood protectively beside his bride, his right hand resting...
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