Richard F. Calichman

in Beyond Nation

Published by Stanford University Press

Published in print March 2016 | ISBN: 9780804797016
Published online January 2017 | e-ISBN: 9780804797559 | DOI:

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This chapter sets forth the notion of intervention in order to explore the manner in which Abe has been read in the U.S. Japan Studies field. Of central significance is the contradiction in which Abe’s attack against the logic of national affiliation has been disavowed through his national inscription as a writer of Japanese literature. Through the example of Abe, this chapter shows that the institution of Japan Studies works to consolidate the hold of nationalism by tightening the bond between nation-state and individual subject. Interpretations of Abe on the part of such scholars as Donald Keene and John Whittier Treat are explored in order to locate a desire for a particularist Japanese identity, one that exists alongside expressions of culturalism, Orientalism, and racism.

Keywords: Abe Kōbō; Japanese literature; racism; nationalism; Orientalism

Chapter.  25597 words. 

Subjects: Literature

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