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The Journal of Japanese Language Literature Studies > Volume 4(1); 2017 > Article
Border Crossings: The Journal of Japanese-Language Literature Studies 2017;4(1): 89-99.
doi: https://doi.org/10.22628/bcjjl.2017.4.1.89
A Study of the Description of Actual Disaster in “Light Novels”: A Focus on the Series of Haruhi Suzumiya
Yoomin NAM
Correspondence  Yoomin NAM ,Email: yumin88@korea.ac.kr
Published online: 30 June 2017.
Copyright ©2017 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.
There are many theories about definition of Light Novel, but it is general that it refers to 'entertainment novels targeting middle and high school students with illustration in the style of cartoon or animation included in cover or its illustration.
There are seldom light novels dealing with actual happenings critically since they are entertainment novels targeting young generations, First, real events are hard to be reconstructed in the form of pursuing amusement since it takes realistic heaviness which seems to exist on the other side of ‘lightness’ as security, posing impossibility on overlooking ethical matters accordingly. This is why light novel looks like it turns away from social matters. But what is interesting is that there exists a hypothesis that a series of『Haruhi Suzumiya』of light novel, which takes a place to represent the whole light novel, was written at the background of Great Hanshin earthquake, a disaster ever unheard in entire history of Japan.
This paper analyzed how actual disasters are expressed in genre of light novel as well as examining traces of great earthquake in a series of『Haruhi Suzumiya』based on this hypothesis. It could place itself newly being a piece of work to show critical mind and its solutions the writer had experienced as a result of new comprehension. Experience and thoughts on the writer's great earthquake were metaphorically described in a series of『Harnhi Suzumiya』,a light novel, and some readers could not even recognize it is a work written based on memories of great earthquake because of it. This is also a method to maximize light pleasure desired by young readers of modern Japan at the same time minimizing matters occurring when real events are dealt in entertainment novels. It can be said to be a different pattern from actively pondering over the roles of literature in the reality of current disaster literature overwhelming.
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