2023 Student Research Conference:
36th Annual Student Research Conference

Haruki Murakami's Sucess Exemplifies the Fall of Favor Between High-Class Japanese Literature and the Japanese Psyche

Ian R. Boland
Dr. Masahiro Hara, Faculty Mentor

A source of Haruki Murakami’s success in the cultural-literary reflects the development of the overall Japanese culture; consequently, Murakami’s rise to worldwide popularity displays the antithesis of the literary giants before him. Such figures who held influence before him are Yukio Mishima and Junichiro Tanizaki with works, such as The Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima and In the Praise of Shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki that epitomize Japan’s high culture: the traditional aesthetic of Wabi sustained in olden Noh plays. By contrast, Murakami exists as the lower class’s inheritance. His work draws on a more approachable and egalitarian form of culture, viz. kabuki. By these means, not only has Murakami become an exemplary author and storyteller, but it was done so without elitism, unexpectedly amassing a dedicated worldwide following and placing Japanese literature on the map for the foreign reader. 


Keywords: Haruki, Murakami, Yukio, Mishima, Jinichiro, Tanizaki, Wabi, Noh, Kabuki


Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

Session: TBA
Location: TBA
Time: TBA

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