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Kazuo Ishiguro

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Kazuo Ishiguro is a British novelist of Japanese descent. In 2017, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kazuo Ishiguro said he was "in the footsteps of the greatest authors"

British writer Kazuo Ishiguro has won the 2017 Nobel Prize for Literature.

The novelist was praised by the Swedish Academy as a writer "who, in novels of great emotional force, has uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world".

His most famous novels The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go were adapted into highly acclaimed films. He was made an OBE in 1995.

The 62-year-old writer said the award was "flabbergastingly flattering".

He has written eight books, which have been translated into over 40 languages.

 

When contacted by the BBC, he admitted he hadn't been contacted by the Nobel committee and wasn't sure whether it was a hoax.

He said: "It's a magnificent honour, mainly because it means that I'm in the footsteps of the greatest authors that have lived, so that's a terrific commendation."

He said he hoped the Nobel Prize would be a force for good. "The world is in a very uncertain moment and I would hope all the Nobel Prizes would be a force for something positive in the world as it is at the moment," he said.

"I'll be deeply moved if I could in some way be part of some sort of climate this year in contributing to some sort of positive atmosphere at a very uncertain time."

 

 

Who is Kazuo Ishiguro?

Born in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1954, he moved to England with his family when his father was offered a post as an oceanographer in Surrey

He read English and philosophy at the University of Kent after a gap year that included working as a grouse beater for the Queen Mother at Balmoral

He studied an MA in creative writing at the University of East Anglia, where his tutors were Malcolm Bradbury and Angela Carter

His thesis became his critically acclaimed first novel, A Pale View of Hills, published in 1982

 

The Remains of the Day was turned into an Oscar-nominated film with Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson

His work, which includes scripts for film and television, looks at themes of memory, time and self-delusion.

The Nobel committee praised his latest book The Buried Giant, which was released in 2015, for exploring "how memory relates to oblivion, history to the present, and fantasy to reality".

Sara Danius, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, described his style as "a little bit like a mix of Jane Austen, comedy of manners and Franz Kafka".

She said Ishiguro was a writer of "great integrity", adding: "He doesn't look to the side. He's developed an aesthetic universe all of his own."

 

His first novel A Pale View of Hills was about a Japanese woman living in England trying to come to terms with her daughter's death

He followed that with An Artist of the Floating World in 1986

The Remains of the Day tells the story of a butler in a stately home whose boss was a Nazi sympathiser

His only book of the 1990s was The Unconsoled, which was followed by When We Were Orphans in 2000

2005's Never Let Me Go followed a group of students at a boarding school living in a dystopian future. It was turned into a film starring Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan five years later

Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and Nightfall was a collection of stories published in 2009

His most recent novel was The Buried Giant in 2015

Ishiguro has also written a number of screenplays, including The White Goddess and The Saddest Music in the World, as well as other short stories.

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The Swedish Academy said of Ishiguro's work: "...In novels of great emotional force, [he] has uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world," later adding, "If you mix Jane Austin with Franz Kafka, you have Kazuo Ishiguro. You have to add a bit of Marcel Proust in there too.”.

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“I keep thinking about this river somewhere, with the water moving really fast. And these two people in the water, trying to hold onto each other, holding on as hard as they can, but in the end it's just too much. The current's too strong. They've got to let go, drift apart. That's how it is with us. It's a shame, Kath, because we've loved each other all our lives. But in the end, we can't stay together forever.”

 

“But then again I wonder if what we feel in our hearts today isn't like these raindrops still falling on us from the soaked leaves above, even though the sky itself long stopped raining. I'm wondering if without our memories, there's nothing for it but for our love to fade and die.”

 

“What is the point of worrying oneself too much about what one could or could not have done to control the course one's life took? Surely it is enough that the likes of you and I at least try to make our small contribution count for something true and worthy. And if some of us are prepared to sacrifice much in life in order to pursue such aspirations, surely that in itself, whatever the outcome, cause for pride and contentment.”

 

 

Image result for The Remains of the DayImage result for The Buried Giant

 

 

 

 

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