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The Journal of Japanese Language Literature Studies > Volume 11(1); 2020 > Article
Border Crossings: The Journal of Japanese-Language Literature Studies 2020;11(1): 203-225.
doi: https://doi.org/10.22628/bcjjl.2021.11.1.203
Japan-China Relations and Conflicting Identities in The Son of Earth by Toyoko Yamasaki :Focusing on the Character of Yixin Lu
Chuhui TANG
PhD Student, Kansai University Graduate School of Letters
山崎豊子大地の子論 ―― 陸一心の人物像をめぐって
Correspondence  Chuhui TANG ,Email: tangsoki1218@gmail.com
Published online: 30 December 2020.
Copyright ©2021 The Global Institute for Japanese Studies, Korea University
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
This paper examines how Yixin Liu, the main character of Toyoko Yamasaki’s The Son of Earth, was formed. First, Yamasaki’s interview records are investigated to identify who she chose as a model for Yixin. Second, this paper clarifies how Yamasaki deployed the real experiences of war orphans and the conventions of modern Chinese literature to develop the narrative structure of the novel. Then, the features of the main character are analyzed, with a focus on how this final persona evolved from the original draft to the published version. This analysis involves a consideration of the history of post-war Japan-China relations, as they relate to two issues that were neglected in previous studies:Yixin Liu’s long-cherished wish to become fully Chinese, and his perception of his motherland Japan. Based on the analysis of the end of the novel in some of the previous research, this paper discusses the reasons why Yixin eventually becomes ‘the son of the earth’, along with the war orphans who were affected by drastic changes in Japan-China relations. Ultimately Yixin realizes he was brought up in China and that he is a “son of the earth of China”. Therefore, he firmly establishes his identity as Chinese, and is freed from the conflict between his identities.
Keywords: War Orphan, Identity, Japan-China Relationship, Modern Chinese Literary Works, Interview Records

キ―ワ―ド: 戦争孤児, アイデンティティ, 日中関係, 現代中国文学作品, 取材記録
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