Literary studies in the twenty-first century have been characterized by a restlessness and dissatisfaction with the everyday practice of criticism. This essay argues, firstly, that the interpretative strategies brought to light by recent debates about critical methods can enhance our understanding of Kazuo Ishiguro's fiction, and secondly, that his fiction can, in turn, help us appraise the value, as well as the limitations, of these polemical interventions.
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I am grateful to Derek Attridge, Adam Kelly, Kelly Rich, Yoshiki Tajiri, and Richard Walsh for their comments on earlier drafts of this essay. The research was generously supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.