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Word Count: 1,422
Close inspection of The Setting Sun by Dazai Osamu allows one to see a particular family battle changing times that are affecting a whole nation of people Paralleled in many ways by the authors own reality we see how this deep message is more than just a fiction story As a nation Japan had just surrendered to the US ending their participation in WWII With the end of this battle a new one on the home front began In a sense the tradition of Japan died with the war there is a definite passing of a generationera of people The country is now caught in a state of shock as they try to piece together new lives This is by no means a simple task when tradition is pulling from one side and an influx of modern ways and ideas are pulling from the other Through the analyzation of Mother Kazuko and Naoji the notion of a nation struggling to grasp a new modern identity while coping with the decline of a social order that has stood strong for so many years is unfolded from beginning to end creating mixed feelings of hope and depression for the people of the setting sunDue to WWII Kazuko and her mother must leave Tokyo and establish residents in nearby village Kazukos brother Naoji has been fighting in the war and upon its conclusion comes home to his sister and mother with a terrible drug addiction Naoji has an artist friend who acts as a mentordrinking buddy The death of the mother shows the passing of a generation and the suicide of Naoji exemplifies the feelings of depression and hopelessness that float over Japan Kazuko becomes the heroin of the story when she creates a positive experience in the middle of this chaotic time She bears a child which acts as a symbol for a fresh start and new hope during a time when that is just what is
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