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Symbolism in "Kitchen"

Official IOP Grade: 6/7 or 24/30 HL

Frazer Bate

on 9 March 2015

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Transcript of Symbolism in "Kitchen"

Symbols in "Kitchen"
"Kitchen" by Banana Yoshimoto is a Japanese "manga style" novella
Taken from the point of view of Mikage Sakurai's everyday life before and mostly after the death of her grandmother
The Kitchen
By Frazer Bate
Young Japanese Girl and the events after the death of her grandmother
We go through the novella with Mikage and how she deals with the loneliness and grief of the death of her grandmother
wrapped in a blanket, like Linus I slept. The hum of the
kept me from thinking of my loneliness"
"Now only the
and I are left. It's a little nicer than being all alone"
Food & Cooking
Pop Culture
"And it’s true that for the whole summer I went about it with a crazed enthusiasm:
, and
"A mark or character used as a conventional representation of an object, function, or process, e.g. the letter or letters standing for a chemical element or a character in musical notation."
Cooking as a means of self-improvement - Healing process after the death of her grandmother
For Mikage, moral support especially for others
The Moon
Optimism and hope

This passage shows how the beauty of the
fills an empty void in Mikage's heart.
A symbol of Mikage's happy moments
"Hey, look! Isn't that a pretty
?" Yuichi pointed to the winter
with his chin...

...Don't you think that seeing such a beautiful
what one
The bus/child and grandmother

After Eriko is killed
Kitchen Japanese cuisine have miraculous powers of renewal pp. 98-101 where Mikage gives Yuichi the katsudon
Such as the Western Consumerism culture
Fast-Food/Convenience stores
Reflects the readers
Mikage finding herself amongst modern society
Thesis Statement
"Yoshimoto uses symbolism and feminist ideology to show that woman have the ability to be strong, ambitious figures in a Japan that continues to hold onto its traditional values."
The Kitchen Symbolises:

Being an independent woman

A place of familiarity
Food and Cooking Symbolizes:
"..Just when one can't take anymore, one sees the
. Beauty that seems to infuse itself into the heart: I know about that"
Throughout the novella, Yoshimoto uses symbols of the Kitchen, cooking & food, the moon and pop culture to show Mikage's journey of self-discovery, and the forging of new roles for woman living in Japan.

A place which, in the novella, still held prejudice against woman.
Eriko a symbol of Pop-Culture in himself, the seperation of Male and Female roles
Full transcript