Sunday, April 21, 2013

Kafka On the Shore

 Kafka Of the Shore (Literary Techniques)

1) Indirect Characterization: The Boy Named Crow in the first few pages is described not directly but through his verbal communication with Kafka. It shows that he has a deep refined persona and is good with words and has the ability to influence with only his words. But later on it is apparent that it is however some sort of Conscience to Kafka, or could be his alter ego because the name Kafka means Crow, or an imaginary friend. Thus making it magical realistic.

2) Magical Realism: Throughout the whole book magical Realism is identified. For example Ch. 10 Nakata has a complete dialogue with a cat. Basically Magical realism allows for the reader to interpret things with a suspension of disbelief and add more character to the story rather than including mundane detail. For example the following passage of Nakata having a conversation with the cat without magical realism, It would’ve just been Nakata talking with a cat to himself but with the use of magical realism the reader’s disbelief is suspended yielding to be more engaged with the story
“I don’t mind at all, the tallest of heads.”
“pardon me, But Nakata doesn’t understand what you’re saying Forgive me, but I’m not so Bright.”
“It’s a tuna, to the very end.
“Are you perhaps saying you’d like to eat a tuna?”
“No. The hands tied up, before.” And the fact that Kafka talks with Crow who isn’t physically there that allows  for a different way of the protagonist to communicate his thoughts rather than just talking to himself, Kafka is talking to another entity allowing for a more engaging and more thematic  point in the story.
3) Bildungsroman:  means a coming of age or a realization. In The books center theme is around spiritual discovery of oneself and finding one’s place and reason why and connection.  

4) Point of View: Throughout the story the views change between two really different plot lines, between Nakata an old man finding cats and Kafka who is running away both running for different reasons but the two. The point of view is what allows the reader to interpret and follow what’s happening in the novel. As For Kafka Of the Shore it is confusing to keep track but after some time it is apparent that it alternates from Nakata to Kafka on the odd to even and chapters.

5) Symbolism: Symbolism allows for the reader to see the deeper meanings to the objects that the author writes. In Kafka on the Shore there may be some major symbolism to Kafka’s name and The Boy Named Crow.  In Japanese Shinto (Spiritualism) Crows have deep spiritual meaning, they signify divine intervention, which may explain why crow appears to try and help or appear when Kafka needs strength and gives him an edge, maybe and angel rather than an alter ego. Cats also have some symbolism to them in Japanese culture as Nakata had suffered from a massive accident in his youth it gave him very weird abilities to talk with cats, which symbolizes good luck it’s a bit ironic that The Luckiest guy in the book talks with a lucky animal.
6) Personification: Personification gives objects a certain human characteristic, and is a characterized under Magical Realism, therefore the talking Cats that Nakata has throughout the book is a form of Personification.
7) Imagery: Imagery gives the reader something that regular writing with mundane detail cannot accomplish. For example                 “Sometimes Fate is like a small sandstorm that keeps changing                                                                                  directions. You change direction but the sandstorm chases you. You turn                                                    again but the storm adjusts. over and over you play this out, like some                                                                      ominous dance with death just before dawn. Why?”
Instead of saying Your Problems Murakami decides to compare your problems to that of a sandstorm which yields more depth than just straight up saying your problems.
8) Hyperbole: Hyperboles are very apparent within Magical Realistic Books thereforeNakata and Kafka’s ventures into the spiritual realm could be just ordinary occurrences seen through the eyes of an exhausted child, and a deranged man.
9) Foreshadowing: When and author gives subtle clues that have more influence to the story it is Foreshadowing. For example in Ch. 4 It has no dialogue between Nakata or anyone else. but is a whole Dialogue of an interview held with military person who had witnessed several kids being unconscious during an attack in WWII which caused Nakata to fall unconscious for weeks and in the end hindering his mental faculties, which literally foreshadows his ability to talk with cats
10 Diction: When Diction is used correctly it can be used to determine a character’s mental capabilities and author’s purpose. For example, each of the chapters in the novel, switch off from Kafka to Nakata, and in each of the chapters the diction and syntax is very much changed from each one. Nakata’s is more slow and childlike, while Kafka’s is more coherent and lucid.

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