Japanese Tales of Revenge
Free tutorial
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 (1 rating)
689 students
1hr 16min of on-demand video
English [Auto]

Japanese Literature
Japanese History
Self-Reflective Introspection for Martial Artists
Understanding the Mindset of Bushido


  • A passion for traditional Bushido ethics and martial arts


Vendettas, honor, loyalty, murder and betrayal, key components of a classic and yet little known Japanese literary genre known as jitsuroku. The word “jitsuroku” translates as “memoir” and was a genre of literature in feudal Japan that were generally exaggerated stories of political scandals and revenge. These stories were largely based on true events, however through oral transmission and embellishment, these stories would soon intertwine fact and fiction together to the point that trying to decipher between the two would become quite difficult. The result is that epic tales of revenge would soon become transmitted and popularized throughout Feudal Japan.

While many stories have remained unknown, others have managed to permeate pop-culture and survive through the ages by being transformed into Kabuki plays. These plays became so popular throughout Feudal Japan that many have survived into the modern day and continue to see new recreations in Japanese Television and movies. In an attempt to revive these classic stories and introduce them to the western reader I have combined out of print and old texts to compile various classic Japanese tales so that these stories may continue to live on for generations to come.

This course is a Guided Reading experience coupled with self-reflective questions ideal for martial artists and those seeking introspection framed around the ethos of the Bushido mindset.

Who this course is for:

  • Martial Artists
  • Japanese History Enthusiasts


Teacher & Martial Arts Instructor
Justin Hagen, M.Ed
  • 4.5 Instructor Rating
  • 28 Reviews
  • 5,160 Students
  • 3 Courses

Martial arts has been an incredibly influential part of my life since the age of 5 years old. Beginning with ITF Taekwondo in March of 1994 I would go on to compete in numerous tournaments and ultimately received my 2nd Degree Black Belt in 2002. In high school I switched styles and learned Isshin-Ryu Karate under Shihan Kim at J.H. Kim's Karate Institute in Wall, NJ. I received my 2nd Degree Black Belt in Isshin-Ryu in 2011 before going off to college at the University of Rhode Island.

While studying history and philosophy at URI I continued to pursue martial arts and took boxing, which was offered as club sport by the school in 2007 and continued until the program was discontinued in 2009. Also during this time I practiced Muay Thai at Borelli MMA in S. Kingston, RI from 2007-2008.

Upon graduating in 2011 with a BA in History and minor in Philosophy, I resumed boxing once again, this time at the Asbury Park Police Athletic League under coach Carl Simms and continued to box until April of 2016, ultimately having participated in 3 amateur fights including the 2014 Philadelphia Golden Gloves.

After boxing I pursued full contact martial arts and became a sparring partner for professional and amateur MMA & Muay Thai fighters at the American Top Team gym Hammer Fitness in Allentown, PA from December 2014 until April 2016. Also during this time I pursued full contact traditional arts, simultaneously training in both Kyokushin Karate under Shihan Roman Herman and WTF Taekwondo under Master Antonio Orlando.  I have since competed in multiple Knockdown tournaments and currently hold the rank of 1st Dan in Kyokushin and 3rd Dan in WTF Taekwondo.

In 2018 I finished my Master's in Education from DeSales University, focusing heavily on the benefits of martial arts and Eastern philosophy on school age children in my final thesis.

Currently I am an educator for the public school  system outside of Philadelphia, PA as well as a martial arts instructor of both WTF Taekwondo and Kyokushin Karate.

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