A study of Postcolonial Narrative in The Remains of the Day

Anqi WANG, Yanbing ZENG

Abstract


The winner of the Nobel Prize for literature in 2017, Kazuo Ishiguro,is a famous contemporary Japanese-British novelist who, together with Salman Rushdie and V. S. Naipaul, is known as the “Three Giants of Immigrants” in British literature. His novel, The Remains of the Day, was published in 1988 and won Booker Prize in 1989. The Remains of the Day takes two World War and typical British manor as the background and uses the first person retrospective narration form to describe the postwar British butler Stevens in the face of the historical change, the master replacement and some other series of events. The protagonist Stevens has gone through a process of identity change in different background, which is also the process of re-rebuilding identity through various events. As one of Kazuo Ishiguro’s representative works, The Remains of the Day is successful in its unique narrative strategy. Based on narratology theory and Said’s post-colonial identity theory, this paper attempts to explore the subject of the protagonist’s identity behind the text by virtue of Stevens’ unreliable narration, so as to show the process of his subjectivity, identity loss and identity reconstruction.

 


Keywords


The Remains of the Day; Unreliable narration; Post-colonism; Identity

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References


Bhabha, H. (2004). The location of culture. New York: Routledge.

Booth, W. C. (1983). The rhetoric of fiction (2nd ed.). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Ishiguro, K.(1990). The remains of the day. New York: Vintage Books.

Lubbock, P. (1996). The craft of fiction. London: Jonathan Cape.

Phelan, J. (1996). Narrative as rhetoric: Technique, audiences, ethnics, ideology. Columbus: Ohio State University Press.

Shaffer, B. W. (1998). Understanding Kazuo Ishiguro. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/11388

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