IJSSH 2015 Vol.5(1): 116-119 ISSN: 2010-3646
DOI: 10.7763/IJSSH.2015.V5.435

Nishizuru, Chapei, and so on: The Representation of Crisis in Kazuo Ishiguro‟s Novels

Motoko Sugano
Abstract—This paper examines a particular representation of crisis in Kazuo Ishiguro’s novels. It focuses on two separate surprisingly similar literary constructions of poor district, and considers the implications of the ways in which the crisis of the times is presented. First, I look at the “Nishizuru” district of slums included in Ishiguro’s second novel, An Artist of the Floating World (1986). Second, I consider “Chapei,” an extremely crowded Chinese quarter and front for a war between the Japanese and Chinese in his fifth novel, When We Were Orphans (2000). To address the issue of crisis, I would like to tentatively define the word as referring to “the state of the nation,” or to use a more prominent term, the “Condition of England.” This term was coined by Thomas Carlyle in Chartism (1837) and Past and Present (1843) to reference the alarming nature of a problem that originated in industrialization and the rapid changes it brought to English society. Carlyle’s concern reverberates in some of the contemporary British fictions published in the 1980s and 1990s during, when the British economy underwent neoliberal restructuring. Hence, this presentation discusses how Ishiguro’s fiction responds to contemporary manifestations of the “Condition of England” debate.

Index Terms—Representation, crisis, nishizuru, chapei.

Motoko Sugano is with the Tsurumi University, 2-1-3 Tsurumi, Tsurumi-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa, 230-8501, Japan (e-mail: sugano-m@tsurumi-u.ac.jp).

[PDF]

Cite: Motoko Sugano, " Nishizuru, Chapei, and so on: The Representation of Crisis in Kazuo Ishiguro‟s Novels," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 116-119, 2015.

Copyright © 2008-2015. International Journal of Social Science and Humanity. All rights reserved.
E-mail: ijssh@ejournal.net