PARADOX OF EXISTENCE IN MURAKAMI'S KAFKA ON THE SHORE AND ISHIGURO'S THE REMAINS OF THE DAY
This study explores how Haruki Murakami's Kafka on the Shore and Kazuo Ishiguro's The Remains of the Day delve into the complexities of human existence and identity. Both novels explore profound paradoxes related to the nature of life, self-discovery, and the passage of time. These two novels deal with the stories of people constantly fighting between themselves and the version of themselves created by and for the world. The Remains of the Day explores the life of Stevens, whose authentic sense of existence is closely associated with what he does or shows to others. Kafka of Kafka on the Shore is fighting against a prophecy, which he considers his ultimate fate, and is insecure about his freedom of choice. With Keiji Nishitani's theory of Nothingness, this paper aims to conclude an answer on what makes one's existence authentic, whether one's external world constructs it or it is an innate sense of self-free from external influence, and also to what extent free choice can win over the dependence on fixed fate.
Existentialism; Nothingness; Sunyata; Fate; Humanity.