Illusion and Reality in Ryunoske Akutagawa´s In a Grove

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Japanese writer Ryunoske Akutagawa makes it difficult to distinguish the differences between illusion and reality. “It suited his ironic taste to play the illusionist who leaves his audience staring blankly into a mirror”. We see this in Akutagawa story “In a Grove” because each of three main characters gives conflicting confession, and each have a motivation to possibly lie. Tajomaru was the first of the three main characters to confess, and throughout his confession he is motivated to establish a greater reputation for himself knowing he has nothing to lose. Tajomaru willingly confesses to the police commissioner that he was the one who murdered Takehiko. He later elevates himself to the same level as the police commissioner. “Am I the only one who kills people? You, you don't use your swords. You kill people with your power, with your money. Sometimes you kill them on the pretext of working for their good. It's true they don't bleed. They are in the best of health, but all the same you've killed them. It's hard to say who is a greater sinner, you or me”. By elevating himself to the same status as the commissioner he is making himself an equal to justify that both of them are murderers and that they are the same. Tajomaru also told the police commissioner that he untied Takehiko before there battle. “I untied him and told him to cross sword”. In this quote Tajomaru wants to be view as a fair and honorable person. He further establishes his reputation when he described the
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