“Stevens’ Fervent Belief In The Importance Of Dign

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“Stevens’ fervent belief in the importance of dignity prevents him from experiencing a full and satisfying life.” How important is the theme of dignity to the novels of Kazuo Ishiguro? In Remains of the day there is a reoccurring theme of dignity and it become obvious to the reader that this over welling need to be proud stifles the characters personality but also their life. The question of dignity arrises throughout the two generations in the book; Stevens and his father, this indicates how the repercussions of Mr. William Stevens obsessive nature affects his son, but dignity is also found in the form of proper gentlemen, as well as butlers who allow nothing to distract or faze them from doing their duty. Dignity is described as: ‘the state or quality of being worthy of honour or respect’, the desire to posses this ‘honourably’ reputation becomes evident when Stevens starts to describe a ‘great butler’. He claims that ‘They wear their professionalism as a decent gentleman will wear his suit’ this analogy proves that Stevens’ role as a butler means much more to him than a mere occupation. The equivalence of a suit and a butlers professionalism becomes, in a way, ironic because Stevens explains that he is ‘in the possession of a number of splendid suits, kindly passed on to me over the years by Lord Darlington himself’. The fact that his suits are ‘castoffs’ from his master and former guests could imitate how his obsession for perfection is ‘handed down’ from his father. In addition to this when Stevens goes to reside in the ‘guest house, a street not far from the centre of Salisbury’ he believes that the Landlady regards him as a ‘rather grand visitor on account of.... the high quality of my suit’. This indicates that when Stevens wears the suit he is perceived as someone higher in society than he actually is, consequently meaning that he is able to preform as

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