Examining Style: Banana Yoshimoto

1025 Words5 Pages
Every author has their own style of writing. In Banana Yoshimoto’s Kitchen, Yoshimoto utilizes a variety of literary tools and tones to give the reader an impression of a style that is much different than that of any other author. Through presenting multiple themes such as death, love, and sexual ambiguity within the same story, Yoshimoto’s intricate mix of ideas is one of a kind. I personally believe that critics who say that Yoshimoto’s work is derivative and saccharine are mistaken, as Kitchen clearly shows that she carries a unique, varied style which does not turn her love story into an overly sweet, mushy one. Yoshimoto’s style is a mix of many characteristics, including fragmented passages, straightforwardness, use of unconventional punctuation, as well as a casual tone, making it atypical to what one would find in any other book hence not derivative. “I had a dream. I was scrubbing …that’s so like him.” (36) In this passage, Mikage is having a dream and makes observations on her kitchen, which she is about to leave. She also makes a note of Yuichi, who is helping her scrub the floor. This passage could have easily been written as a dull, simple descriptive paragraph but Yoshimoto has made it much more lively. Through the use of one sentence paragraphs and sudden changes in topic, the whole passage is fragmented and is sudden and unexpected as the previous passage ends with Mikage going to sleep. One would expect the next passage to be about what she did the next day, but instead she starts with “I had a dream.” This transient nature of the story creates a suspenseful effect which makes the reader constantly guess what will happen next. The first sentence contains four words. It is short and absolutely to the point and allows the reading to know exactly what is going on, giving it a straightforward effect. “Funny, but what made me feel most nostalgic was

More about Examining Style: Banana Yoshimoto

Open Document