Generally speaking, the purpose of most forms of artistic expression such as literary art, music, or art itself is a mode by which the author can express him/herself with. They use their respective skills and/or interests to convey feelings or thoughts on any given topic. Short fiction is by no means exempt from this. Many writers use their literary skills to express dreams, aspirations, opinions, or even political viewpoints. In order to make a dertermination of a probable origin for a story, research into the authors life and beliefs most likely will prove benefical. With this in mind, Abe Kobo’s story “The Red Cocoon” seems to be a prime example of an author expressing his political viewpoints and his personal conflicts with society through literature. Given this, researching his life and political stance might help to support or negate such an assumption.
“The Red Cocoon” begins with a man walking down a street discussing with himself the problem of not having a house to go home to. The narrator, who is also the main character, jumps abruptly from topic to topic throughout the story, but this reoccuring theme of the lack of a house seems to be a central idea. As the narrator comtemplates, he wonders if he has just forgotten his house and proceeds to knock on the door of a random house to find out if this is what has happened. After he has explained his plight to the woman who answers the door, he begins arguing with her over having proof that it is not his house. Shortly thereafter, the narrator begins to ponder wether or not things such as concrete pipes or park benches are his house. Deciding that they are on their way to belonging to someone or that they belong to everyone and not just one person, he begins to wonder if anything exsists that belongs to no one. At the end of the story, he finds that one of his legs begins to unwind into a silk thread and wrap him up in a cocoon.
Abe Kobo’s story is...
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