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Tajomaru's Testimony In Rashomon

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Tajomaru's Testimony In Rashomon
Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon relays a perplexing realization about the human condition, that the concept of truth is fallible, or may not exist at all. For, in each account of the Samurai’s death, the manner, location, culprit, and motivation is different. The film begins by providing the audience with the most basic evidence of the murder: That the samurai was found dead in a grove, that a cut rope lay next to him, and that no conceivable murder weapon -- knife or sword -- was found at the crime.

Tajomaru’s testimony, that he killed the samurai in a duel after “seducing” his wife, initially seems most plausible. Examining Tajomaru’s testimony from the perspective of John Locke reveals few discrepancies between the case’s evidence, other testimonies,
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As the wife approaches her husband, she is met with a gaze full of loathing, eventually enticing her to turn her knife towards him. She faints and awakens to find the knife in her husband’s chest, deducing that she must have killed her husband. Locke would immediately be skeptical of the validity of her testimony due to her wildly emotional mannerisms, at times sobbing uncontrollably. He may assume that her turbulent emotional state has clouded her perception and memory of the crime. Although unknown to Locke, Kurosawa hints that her recollection of the events is flawed when she recounts “How horrified my husband must have been, the more he struggled, the tighter the ropes dug in.” When we witness her flashback, however, the samurai remains calm, unwavering, and stoic throughout. When comparing Tajomaru’s testimony to this one, Locke would favor the former. By applying Ockham’s razor to both testimonies, we realize that Tajomaru’s testimony contains one unresolved variable -- who took the dagger from the crime scene? The wife’s testimony, on the other hand, has two unresolved variables, as she leaves the knife in her husband’s chest and makes no mention of cutting the ropes ensnaring her husband. In order for her testimony to make sense, an entity must be added to both take the knife from the husband’s chest and slice his ropes. At this point, Locke would discredit the …show more content…
Berkeley would first disagree with Locke’s analysis of Tajomaru’s experience with the samurai’s wife, as he does not believe in the existence of primary and secondary qualities. Berkeley instead proposed “immaterialism”, a theory denying the existence of material substances. The theory asserts that objects are merely ideas in the minds of perceivers and, as a result, cannot exist without being perceived. Berkeley’s statement “esse est percipi” summarizes his theory, translated as “To be is to be perceived.” Therefore, however Tajomaru perceives his experience with the samurai’s wife is how it occurred. Furthermore, It is also possible to apply the esse est percipi concept to Tajomaru himself. However his mannerisms, characteristics, actions, and history are being perceived by the court is how he exists. If he exudes insanity and has a criminal record, his testimony is more credible.
Next, Berkeley would immediately discredit the wife’s testimony, as she faints and induces that she has killed her husband. Since no one perceived the murder of the samurai, no a posteriori evidence of his death exists in her testimony. Berkeley would declare that we should not rely on inductive reasoning when we have plausible explanations of the same event relying on evidence obtained by the

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