S-Space College of Education (사범대학) Foreign Language Education Research Institute (외국어교육연구소) 외국어교육연구 (Foreign Language Education Research) 외국어교육연구 (Foreign Language Education Research) vol.20-21 (2017)
Critique of Japan as an East-West Literary Hybrid in Yoko Tawada’s Kafka Kaikoku
- Roberts, Lee M.
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 외국어교육연구소
- 외국어교육연구, Vol.20, pp. 17-39
- Yoko Tawada; Franz Kafka; Izumi Kyōka; linguistic and cultural transformation; adaptation; translation; language learning, modernity; East-West clash; cultural hybridity; Die Verwandlung; Metamorphosis
- Yoko Tawada’s drama Kafka Kaikoku (2013) depicts Japan’s encounter with Western culture from the Meiji era on as the catalyst for a metamorphosis much like Gregor Samsa’s in the work of the same name by Franz Kafka. Ironically, the victim of this East-West clash turns out to be Izumi Kyōka (1873- 1939), a man who was anything but an enthusiastic adopter of European literary style. Interweaving elements also from Kafka’s Ein Landarzt (A Country Doctor, 1919), Tawada’s play suggests further that Izumi’s fate was set, since he—and, by extension, all Japanese—could not resist roles the West had prepared for him. Ultimately, this article explains, Kafka Kaikoku offers a critical view of modernization as a force that made Japanese into beings with a hybrid literary consciousness who lacked both much of their own native particularity and also their very humanity.