Paper Title
Perspectives on the use of Eco-Critical Tropes in Yasunari Kawabata’s Novels: Thousand Cranes and the Old Capital

Yasunari Kawabata’, a celebrated Japanese novelist, won the Nobel Prize for Literature in the year 1972. At this juncture, three of his books, i.e. Snow Country, Thousand Cranes and The Old Capital, treated as a compendium series, were nominated towards the coveted award. While Kawabata won laurels for his quaint depiction of traditional Japan during the war and post-war period (World War II), acclaimed critics such as Tsuruta and Hibbett critiqued him for his ‘melancholic lyricism’, given that his books as yet reverberate the age old Japanese literary tradition of representational ‘haiku brevity’ dressed in painful modern idioms. More specifically, his works are commended for displaying a ‘broad and lasting’ appeal, and still continue to exude a pincer-hold over the international reader-community. For instance, as a striking characteristic feature, one derives, a vague ‘sense of loneliness’ and a narrative outline emphasizing ‘preoccupation with death in the presence of the other’ pervades most of his works,– reflecting the ethos of his times. Besides, the abrupt scenic transitions between distinct ‘brief and lyrical’ episodes, the exquisite use of ‘symbolic imagery’, the candid focus of ‘metaphor’, has frequently amazed every arbiter due to its capacity for creating forever-lasting ‘incompatible impressions’. In that, given the thread of ‘literary anthropology’, the juxtaposition of ‘beauty’ with ‘disgust’ in his novels recreates the aura of the sublime, an aspect nestled in the crest of Japanese prose hailing from the seventeenth century. As such, the current research paper is geared towards unveiling the psychoanalytical problem of ‘eco-phobia’ in relation to various eco-critical tropes in two of Yasunari Kawabata’s novels: them being, Thousand Cranes and The Old Capital. Keywords - Eco-criticism, the sublime, Yasunari Kawabata, Thousand Cranes, The Old Capital, Japanese Literature, Cultural Studies