Literary Themes: The Other
November, 17 th 2011
An Analysis of Kazuo Ishiguro‘s “Never Let Me Go”
In the video “The Empathic Civilisation”, Jeremy Rifkin shows that no one is an “other” since people can empathize with everyone else. Therefore every kind of illusory differences that exists between people disappears since empathy provides a feeling that everyone is related (1) . However, Kazuo Ishiguro‘s “Never Let Me Go” explores the theme of otherness, even though empathy is one of the dominant feelings throughout the story. The clones, who are an oppressed group used as organ donors, experience the feeling of “otherness”when they are in relation with the “normal” people. Indeed, the clones feel alienated from each other even though they were created for the same use. For instance, Kathy is the most empathetic character who she feels like the “odd one out”, which accounts for both her similarities and differences between her friends, Tommy and Ruth. Through an analysis of Madame’s reaction, as well as Kathy‘s sexual life and job as a career, it will be clear that Kathy makes herself as an “other” during the whole story [rephrase]. (She accepts the reality) Kathy is a clone created to provide vital organs for “normal” people, who is viewed like an “other”, but she accepts her fate. From the beginning of the story, Kathy is curious about what is really going on at Hailsham. She is constantly seeking some truth with Tommy about who they are about their future. Once, she discovers with Ruth that Madame, who is a “normal” human being responsible of Hailsham, is afraid of them “in the same way someone might be afraid of spiders.”(35). From that moment, Kathy knew that there is something different about them, and this difference makes other people afraid of them. In fact, the kids are compared to “spiders”which are a type of insect that do not really have feelings because they are cold blooded and scary. Thus, Kathy and her friends are...