Reading against Culture: Ideology and Narrative in the Japanese Novel

Overview

Reading against Culture starts from the problem that a concept of "culture" is both destructive and necessary. Culture constitutes the environment within which self develops and interacts with other; as a closed environment of self-identity, however, culture inevitably implies alterity and exclusion. David Pollack proposes that only by reading "against" culture—both by understanding how our involvement in it conditions our writing and reading, and by understanding how its inclusion of self entails the exclusion ...

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Overview

Reading against Culture starts from the problem that a concept of "culture" is both destructive and necessary. Culture constitutes the environment within which self develops and interacts with other; as a closed environment of self-identity, however, culture inevitably implies alterity and exclusion. David Pollack proposes that only by reading "against" culture—both by understanding how our involvement in it conditions our writing and reading, and by understanding how its inclusion of self entails the exclusion of other—can we begin to resist the hegemonic impulse inherent in reading across cultures.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801480355
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/1992
  • Series: 12/1/2006
  • Pages: 272

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction: Reading against Culture 1
A Paradigm: Kipling and Barthes in the Empire of Signs 12
Pt. I Constructions of the Self
1 The Idea of the Individual Self 39
2 The Psychopathic Self: Natsume Soseki's Kokoro 53
3 The Deviant Self: Jun'ichiro Tanizaki's Some Prefer Nettles 67
Pt. II Ideology and Its Articulation
4 Ideology, Aesthetics, Science 89
5 The Ideology of Aesthetics: Yasunari Kawabata's Thousand Cranes and Snow Country 100
6 The Ideology of Science: Kobo Abe's Woman in the Dunes 121
Pt. III Narrative and the Novel
7 A Narrative of Their Own: Japan and the Novel 139
8 The Critique of Everything: Yukio Mishima's The Sea of Fertility 148
Pt. IV The Problem of Culture
9 Culture: Reading in the Hall of Mirrors 177
10 The Archaeology of Difference: Kenzaburo Oe's The Silent Cry 192
11 The Escape from Culture: Takeshi Kaiko's Into a Black Sun 211
Conclusion: Narrative and Ideology: Toward a Practice of Reading 229
Bibliography 247
Index 257
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