Sunday 28 January 2018

My Twentieth Century Evening and Other Small Breakthroughs

Finished January 24
My Twentieth Century Evening and Other Small Breakthroughs: The Nobel Lecture by Kazuo Ishiguro

This lecture looks back at his life, and his moments of change. He discusses the start of his writing career, a writing course he took over the winter of 1979-80, and how it was the first time he articulated his images of his homeland to others. Putting them down on paper was necessary to him at the time to prevent himself losing them. He discusses his presence in England and the influence that move had on his life. He talks about reading Proust and suddenly seeing a different way of moving a story forward, and later, how a Tom Waits song provided the insight into what was missing in the novel he was writing at the time. There are other examples here of writing breakthroughs for him.
He looks at how small these private movements sometimes seem, even though they are not, and how we have to be open to recognizing them.
He goes on to articulate what he would like see in the literature of the future, and of the important role he hopes it will play in the world.
A small volume, but full of insight and hope.

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