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A postmodernist rendition of the clash between materialism and spiritualism in Haruki Murakami's ‘The Elephant Vanishes’

Journal: International Journal of English, Literature and Social Science (Vol.6, No. 3)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 193-200

Keywords : Postmodernism; binary; contradiction; materialism; spiritualism.;

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Haruki Murakami's novels have been widely studied and praised for their depiction of human feelings and nature but the role of his short stories in discussing complex social phenomena has largely been overlooked. “The Elephant Vanishes” is a brilliant story set in 1980s Japan which focuses on the clash between materialism and spiritualism but a postmodernist analysis tells us this ‘clash' and ‘binary opposition' of ideologies is not as straightforward as one would imagine. Also, it also reveals that trying to find any grand and objective solution to the problem of the clash might be of no use. The plot is multilayered, complex and somewhat confusing, thanks to the narrator's ambivalence which is suggestive and telling at times. This paper seeks to unearth what's beneath the plot and aims to show how the clash between spiritualism and materialism could be interpreted from a postmodernist viewpoint.

Last modified: 2021-06-09 13:42:27