The Remains of the Day was published in 1989 and is the third novel written by Kazuo Ishiguro. In 1989, the novel won the Man Booker Prize; and in 2017, Kazuo Ishiguro was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. In 1993, the novel was put to screen with the same name for a title, and it starred Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson.
The Remains of the Day is written in the first person, narrated by the principal character Stevens. Stevens is a butler about to embark on an automobile holiday to the west country of England. During this holiday, we learn about what’s presently going on, as well as Steven’s past as a butler and various events that occurred in that time. Stevens also relates his own thoughts, feelings, and impressions about a variety of things; but principally, his thoughts on dignity and his job as a butler are foremost.
History plays a key role in the story line. The present time Stevens is living in is in the 1950s. But he takes the reader back to the years leading up to World War II. Major historical names of the time make an appearance in the novel even though it is a fiction book with fictional characters.
As I previously mentioned, the virtue of dignity is a key concept in the novel. Stevens ponders what dignity is and reflects on it off and on throughout the book. Be watching to see if his ideas of what dignity is remain the same throughout the novel or if it changes as the novel progresses.
I look forward to discussing this novel with you in a few weeks!