A SARJANA PENDIDIKAN THESIS Presented as Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements to Obtain the Sarjana Pendidikan Degree in English Language Education
THE CAUSES OF LONELINESS AS EXPERIENCED BY TORU WATANABE
IN HARUKI MURAKAMI’S NORWEGIAN WOOD A SARJANA PENDIDIKAN THESIS Presented as Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements to Obtain the Sarjana Pendidikan Degree in English Language Education By Christiana Anindya Putri Student Number: 101214094 ENGLISH LANGUAGE EDUCATION STUDY PROGRAM DEPARTMENT OF LANGUAGE AND ARTS EDUCATION FACULTY OF TEACHERS TRAINING AND EDUCATION SANATA DHARMA UNIVERSITY YOGYAKARTA 2015
THE CAUSES OF LONELINESS AS EXPERIENCED BY TORU WATANABE
IN HARUKI MURAKAMI’S NORWEGIAN WOOD A SARJANA PENDIDIKAN THESIS Presented as Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements to Obtain the Sarjana Pendidikan Degree in English Language Education By Christiana Anindya Putri Student Number: 101214094 ENGLISH LANGUAGE EDUCATION STUDY PROGRAM DEPARTMENT OF LANGUAGE AND ARTS EDUCATION FACULTY OF TEACHERS TRAINING AND EDUCATION SANATA DHARMA UNIVERSITY YOGYAKARTA 2015
“There is no elevator to success.
You have to take the stairs.” I dedicate this thesis to my family, my friends, and myself.
Putri, Christiana Anindya. (2015). The Causes of Loneliness as Experienced by
Toru Watanabe in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. Yogyakarta: EnglishLanguage Education Study Program, Sanata Dharma University.
This study discusses the causes of loneliness which is depicted in
Norwegian Wood , a novel written by a Japanese author named Haruki Murakami.The novel tells about Toru Watanabe who encounters loneliness during his college time and it worsens after the death of his best friend. The loss of his beloved one disconnects him from those around him and it leads him into loneliness.
The aim of this study is to discover the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe as the major character of the novel. Two research problems are formulated in this study, i. e.
1) How is Toru Watanabe’s character described in the novel? and 2) What are the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe?
To answer both research questions, the writer used library research as the method of this study. Psychological approach was applied in this study because it focuses on the psychological side of human being. The primary source of the study was a novel entitled Norwegian Wood. Meanwhile, the secondary sources of this study were books, journals, and articles that contained the related theories or reviews about psychological approach, loneliness, theory of character and characterization, and theory of human needs.
From the analyses, the study reveals that Toru Watanabe is described as a loner, caring, ordinary, unconfident, and self-doubted person. In addition, there are three causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe, namely Toru lacks of companionship, Toru is unable to attain his desired relationship with Naoko, and Toru lacks of belongingness and love needs, self-esteem needs, and self-actualization needs.
The suggestions for the future researchers who are interested in analyzing
Norwegian Wood are to discover the causes of loneliness as experienced by other
characters, such as Naoko. In addition, the future researchers may also explore about Naoko and her schizophrenia. Besides, since there are some characters who commit suicide in the young age, the future researchers may also analyze the meaning of death as seen by Toru Watanabe.
Keywords: Norwegian Wood, loneliness, causes
Putri, Christiana Anindya. (2015). The Causes of Loneliness as Experienced by
Toru Watanabe in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. Yogyakarta: Pendidikan
Bahasa Inggris, Fakultas Keguruan dan Ilmu Pendidikan, Universitas Sanata Dharma.
Penelitian ini membahas tentang kesepian yang diceritakan dalam
Norwegian Wood, sebuah novel karya penulis Jepang bernama Haruki
Murakami. Novel ini menceritakan tentang Toru Watanabe, tokoh yang
mengalami kesepian yang terjadi setelah kematian sahabatnya. Rasa kehilangan
yang dialami oleh Toru Watanabe membuatnya menjauh dari orang-orang disekitarnya dan mengakibatkan rasa kesepian.
Tujuan dari penelitian ini adalah untuk menemukan penyebab kesepian
yang dialami oleh Toru Watanabe sebagai tokoh utama dalam novel. Dua
masalah telah dirumuskan dalam penelitian ini, yaitu 1) Bagaimana tokoh Toru
Watanabe digambarkan dalam novel? dan 2) Apakah penyebab kesepian yangdialami oleh Toru Watanabe? Untuk menjawab rumusan masalah tersebut, penulis menggunakan studi
pustaka sebagai metode penelitian. Pendekatan psikologi juga diterapkan karena
pendekatan tersebut membahas tentang sisi psikologis manusia. Sumber primer
dari penelitian ini adalah sebuah novel yang berjudul Norwegian Wood. Sumber
sekunder dari penelitian ini adalah buku, jurnal, dan artikel yang terdiri dari
teori atau ulasan yang berkaitan dengan pendekatan psikologi, kesepian, teorikarakter dan karakterisasi, serta teori kebutuhan manusia.
Berdasarkan analisa data, hasil temuan dapat disimpulkan sebagai
berikut. Pertama, Toru Watanabe digambarkan sebagai tokoh yang penyendiri,
perhatian, sederhana, tidak percaya diri dan meragukan diri sendiri. Kedua,
penyebab kesepian yang dialami oleh Toru Watanabe adalah Toru tidak
mempunyai banyak teman, Toru tidak dapat mencapai hubungan yang
dikehendakinya dengan Naoko dan Toru kekurangan kebutuhan akan rasa cinta
dan rasa memiliki, kebutuhan akan harga diri, dan kebutuhan akan aktualisasidiri.
Saran untuk penelitian lebih lanjut yang tertarik untuk menganalisa
Norwegian Wood yaitu menemukan penyebab kesepian yang dialami oleh
karakter lain, yaitu Naoko. Terlebih lagi, peneliti berikutnya dapat meneliti
tentang Naoko dan penyakit schizophrenia yang dideritanya. Selain itu, karena
banyaknya karakter yang bunuh diri di usia muda, para peneliti berikutnya dapatmenganalisa makna dari kematian dilihat oleh Toru Watanabe.
Keywords: Norwegian Wood, loneliness, causes
First of all, I would like to send my greatest gratitude and praise to Jesus
Christ. I truly thank Him for His endless blessing and love upon the process of
writing this thesis. I believe that without His guidance I would not have been able to finish this thesis and give my best and my very best.
The greatest gratitude and deep appreciation of mine go to my thesis advisor Ibu Veronica Triprihatmini, S.Pd., M.Hum., M.A. who has patiently guided and encouraged me during this challenging process of writing my thesis. I thank her for the valuable advices, correction, suggestions, and motivation given to me sincerely. Her dedication has surely led me to finish the thesis successfully. I also owe a great debt to all lecturers of English Language Education Study
Program for their assistance during my study in Sanata Dharma University. I
would peculiarly thank Drs. Barli Bram M.Ed., Ph.D. for being a supportive academic advisor of my class. Besides, I also thank all staff of English Language
Education Study Program for all the help during my study.
My deep gratitude also goes to my beloved family: Bapak Antonius
Purwono Budi Santoso, Ibu Laurentia Sri Waluyajati and Mas Ignatius
Aditya Pratama for their sincere and unconditional love, and support in many
aspects. My gratitude also goes to my big families, House of Maridi and House
of Darmopuspito for all support and prayers given to me. May God always grantthem joys and peace.
My sincerest thanks also go to my beloved best friends
- – Dhea, Siwi,
Mbak Nay , Ratih, Gistha, Ajeng, Yeskha, and Tika
- – for helping, reminding, and supporting me in writing my thesis and for all the ups and downs that we have been through together. I also would like to thank my best friends who have been great companions since six years ago and still counting: Bernadetta Prawesti,
Eska Nugrahaeningtyas and Fransiska Novieta. For every companion, support
and togetherness, I thank my Global Leadership Program buddies (Billy,
Detha, Lili, Nino, Nafta), all best friends in Galaxy, all best friends in Adele, all
best friends in Kelompok 39 KKN XLVII USD, and all good friends in ELESP
Sanata Dharma University batch 2010. I also would like to express my
appreciation to my friends in OMK Santo Laurensius for spending time together and forgetting thesis for a while. I also want to address my gratitude to
Mas Paskalis Damar Aji Kurnia, S.Pd, and Mbak Musrifatun Nangimah,S.Pd. for proofreading my thesis and giving valuable suggestions.
Last but not least, I want to address my gratitude to those people who sincerely motivate, inspire, and help me in many ways. I apologize for not being able to mention the names one by one. May God grant them His sincere love and blessing.
Christiana Anindya Putri
TABLE OF CONTENTSPage
TITLE PAGE ............................................................................................. i APPROVAL PAGES ................................................................................. ii DEDICATION PAGE ................................................................................ iv v STATEMENT OF WORK’S ORIGINALITY ...........................................
PERNYATAAN PERSETUJUAN PUBLIKASI ........................................... vi
ABSTRACT ............................................................................................... vii
ABSTRAK ................................................................................................... viii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ....................................................................... ix TABLE OF CONTENTS ........................................................................... xi LIST OF APPENDICES ............................................................................ xiii
CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION A.
1 Background of the Study ....................................................
4 Problem Formulation ..........................................................
5 Objectives of the Study ......................................................
5 Benefits of the Study ..........................................................
6 Definition of Terms ............................................................
CHAPTER II. REVIEWS OF RELATED LITERATURE A.
8 Review of Related Study ....................................................
9 Review of Related Theories ...............................................
9 Psychological Approach to Literature ...........................
10 Theory of Character .......................................................
11 Theory of Characterization ............................................
12 Theory of Human Needs .................................................
15 Review about Loneliness ...............................................
20 Theoretical Framework ......................................................
CHAPTER III. METHODOLOGY A.
22 Object of the Study .............................................................
23 Approach of the Study ........................................................
23 Method of the Study ...........................................................
CHAPTER IV. ANALYSIS A.
25 The Description of Toru Watanabe ....................................
27 A Loner ..........................................................................
33 An Ordinary Person .......................................................
35 A Caring Person .............................................................
40 A Self-Doubted Person ..................................................
The Causes of Loneliness as Experienced by Toru Watanabe ...................................................................
43 Lack of Companionship ..................................................
48 Unable to Attain His Desired Relationship ...................
3. Lack of Belongingness and Love Needs, Esteem Needs, and Self-Actualization Needs ........................................
52 CHAPTER V. CONCLUSIONS, IMPLICATIONS, AND SUGGESTIONS A.
60 Conclusions ........................................................................
62 Implications ........................................................................
66 Suggestions ......................................................................... REFERENCES ...........................................................................................
LIST OF APPENDICESPage APPENDIX I Summary of Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood .......
70 APPENDIX II Biography of Haruki Murakami .....................................
CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION This chapter is divided into five parts. The first part is background of the
study which explains the description of the topic and also the reasons why the topic is chosen. The second is the objectives of the study that describes the aim of conducting the research. The third is problem formulation which consists of two questions that describe the problems which will be answered. The next part is the benefits of the study that identifies the benefits for the writer, the reader in general, and the next researchers. The last is definition of terms which presents some terms related to the study and its explanation.
A. Background of the Study Humans are not just biological creatures; they are social creatures as well.
Living in this world insist s human to be social creatures because human’s life depends on other humans. All human beings are unable to live without others. Thus, they have to build relationship in order to fulfill their needs. Besides, all of us need other people in order to be well and thrive. It also means that their survival also depends on another human’s effort and help. The relationship and connections among humans are the key of survival even happiness. For instance, people need others to talk to and to have fun in order to be happy.
As social creatures, all human beings need to interact with others. However, there are some people who choose to withdraw themselves from society and tend to be alone. Those who withdraw themselves from society might have difficulties in establishing relationship with others. People who have difficulty in establishing relationships will have negative effect, for instance: loneliness. Loneliness is an unpleasant psychological experience which occurs in human being’s life. According to Perlman and Peplau (1984), a person’s characteristics such as shyness, low self-esteem, introversion, and lack of social skill are able to trigger loneliness. Dissatisfaction with the quality of actual relationship and the loss of an important relationship through death or breaking up can also cause loneliness.
People can be lonely or feel the loneliness while they are in the middle of a crowd. Baron and Byrne (1987) state that loneliness can be a situation when a person feels isolated and friendless although he or she is in the midst of crowd (p. 521). People can feel lonely while being surrounded by others because there is no desire for social interaction or they are unsatisfied with the relationship that is currently available. Losing the beloved one by death can also make a person feel lonely. It is supported by Perlman and Peplau (1984) who say that the loss of an important relationship through death, divorce, or breaking up is a factor of loneliness (p. 23). When a person suffers from broken heart or losing the beloved one, psychologically, he or she will feel the sadness. When someone feels sad, physically, he or she probably will express the sad feelings with negative behaviors. One of the examples is the person will close himself or herself from others, which can lead into loneliness.
Losing beloved one because of death is one example of the events which happens in our real life. Normally, the sad feelings will slowly disappear and new hopes to start a new life will come as well. However, if the sad feelings stay in one’s heart for a long time, it will influence his or her life. The condition of losing a beloved one happens in Toru Watanabe, the major character of Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. Toru Watanabe has lost his best friend and he experiences loneliness during his adolescent.
Set in Tokyo in the 1960s, the story focuses on Toru Watanabe, a university student who is haunted by the suicide of his best friend named Kizuki, which brings him into his loneliness and withdrawal toward society. Toru falls in love with Naoko, Kizuki’s girlfriend who is isolated in her own mind. The death of Kizuki affects Toru and Naoko deeply and it also brings Naoko into depression. Both decide to attend college in Tokyo where they can get away from their past memories. After a chance encounter on a train, Toru reignites his friendship with Naoko and recalls his love to Naoko. As their relationship deepens, it becomes apparent that Naoko is encountering depression. When they are separated, Toru hopes that Naoko will recover, but his life becomes more complicated when he meets an outgoing girl named Midori.
In this study, the writer uses a novel as the subject of the study. According to Holman and Harmon (1986), novels are representations in fictional narrative of life or experience (p. 336). Novel, as one example of literary works, presents the reflection of human life which involves various characters and conversations in happens in the novel also happens in the reality. Novel also brings out many things in life which the readers have not experienced before. When reading a novel, the readers are invited to visualize what they are reading with their own imagination and, if possible, act as if they were one of the characters in the novel.
In addition, by reading the novel, the readers are able to get and learn some life values provided in the story.
The writer chooses Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami because this novel presents the real life events, i.e. losing beloved one and how to cope with the grief. Besides, the sense of loneliness happens in the life of most characters, including Toru Watanabe as the major character. Toru withdraws himself from society and he feels lonely although he is in a crowded place. The suicide of his best friend makes Toru deal with the grief and the loss of his beloved one.
From all those statements, the writer finds that the sorrow of loss is unavoidable. When a person unable to deals with the grief of losing and step forward, he or she will stick to the past and it might cause loneliness. Therefore, the writer wants to see the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood.
B. Problem Formulation
Based on previous explanation, the problems of this study can be formulated as follows:
1. How is Toru Watanabe’s character described in the novel? 2.
C. Objectives of the Study
The objective of the study is to discover the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe, the major character of Haruki Murakami’s
Norwegian Wood . In order to discover the causes of loneliness, this study will
focus on analyzing the characteristic of Toru Watanabe. The characteristics of Toru Watanabe and the causes of loneliness will be presented in chapter IV of this study.
D. Benefits of the Study
The study hopefully brings some benefits in many ways for the writer and the reader as well. First, it is expected that this study will become one of the information sources and enrich the knowledge for those who read Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. Second, the readers and the writer are able to study the deeper message from the novel. Hopefully, the readers can get a better understanding about the novel since this study tries to explore the characteristic of Toru Watanabe as the major character and the causes of loneliness which is experienced by Toru. Third, the writer hopes this study can be beneficial for Sanata Dharma University students, especially for English Language Education Study Program, by providing learning materials. For the next researchers which related to the subject of this study, hopefully this study can give a contribution to the deeper comprehensive study concerned in literary works, especially in the interpretation of Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood.
E. Definition of Terms
The following is the important terms used in this study. In order to avoid confusion and misunderstanding, the important terms used in this study are clarified, namely loneliness and character.
Loneliness is a psychological experience which occurs in human being’s life and it is typically an unpleasant experience. According to Peplau and Perlman (1982), loneliness is a feeling which appears whenever a person is unable to attain his or her desired relationship (as cited in Baron, 1974, p. 521). Loneliness is different from solitude, as Tillich (1985) already states that solitude expresses the joy of being alone, while loneliness expresses the pain of feeling alone (as cited in Vanhalst, 2012, p. 4). This study will discover the causes of loneliness as experienced by the major character of Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. Besides, the phrase “the causes of loneliness” means to explain the nature of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe in the novel.
Characters are the important element in literary works because characters inhabit the story and build the readers’ interest. Abrams (2012) defines characters as the persons which are introduced in a narrative or dramatic work and interpreted by the readers through the dialogues and the actions (p. 46). The a story and described by the readers through his or her action, appearance, and speech to find the personality. In this study, the character which will be observed is Toru Watanabe, the major character in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood.
CHAPTER II REVIEWS OF RELATED LITERATURE This chapter presents the theories which are used to analyze the topic of
the study. It is divided into three parts, namely review of related study, review of related theories and theoretical framework. Review of related study reviews other related study on the same work which has been done previously. Review of related theory presents several theories which will be applied for conducting the study. Meanwhile, theoretical framework explains the contribution of the theories to solve the problem and the reason why this study applies such theories.
A. Review of Related Study
Norwegian Wood is a novel written by a Japanese author named Haruki
Murakami. Since this novel is interesting to discuss, there are many studies and articles discussed this novel. One of them is an article written by Christopher Mihalo which is entitled
“The Triviality of a Pop Song: How Murakami’s
Character’s Overcome Detachedness”. This study analyzed the detachedness of
Toru Watanabe, the major character in Murakami’s Norwegian Wood, and discussed the details of the events that lead Toru to his ultimate reentry into society. In his study, Mihalo discovered seve ral leading factors of Toru’s detachment with society, one of them is Toru recalls his love for Naoko. Because of his detachment from society, Toru shows a failure to communicate with others.
However, Toru is preferred to live in a comfortable solitude which means that his solitude and detachment are a conscious choice.
In his study, Mihalo stated that being detached from society means a person cares only on himself or herself. Thus, he concluded that overcoming detachment can be done by conveying feeling towards others. It can be seen on the novel when Toru is finally able to portray any internal feeling besides loneliness and this feeling is directed towards another person.
This study is also going to analyze the same character on the previous study. However, the goal of this study is different from the goal of previous study.
The previous study analyzed how Toru Watanabe overcomes his detachment. Meanwhile, this study will analyze the character of Toru Watanabe and discover the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe.
B. Review of Related Theories
There are numbers of theories related to this study. This part includes those theories used in conducting this study. They are theory of character, theory of characterization, theory of human needs, and review of loneliness.
1. Psychological Approach to Literature
Rohberger and Woods (1971) note that there are five critical approaches used to analyze a work of literature, one of them is a psychological approach.
Psychological approach is an approach which focuses on the character’s feeling, psychological approach analyzes a novel from psychological side of human beings. It intends to understand the pattern of human personality and behavior.
Thus, the characters’ behavior and thought can be appropriately understood by using a psychological approach (pp. 6-15). In this study, a psychological approach is used to explore the information related to the personality of a character from the psychological point of view.
2. Theory of Character
Character is one element in a novel despite setting, plot, theme, symbolism, point of view, etc. In the novel, characters have important roles since they enliven the story and build the readers’ interest. The creations of character make the readers understand and experience what the author wants to convey through the works since characters are the representation of human being. Abrams (2012) defines characters as the persons introduced in a dramatic or narrative work that show moral, dispositional, and emotional qualities which are revealed through the action and the dialogue (p. 46). In this point, character is understood as the qualities that describes a particular figure in the story.
Characters in fiction drama have many categories, depending on the context. Henkle (1977) divides characters into two categories, namely major character and secondary character or minor character (p. 88). Henkle defines major character as a character which is presented with fullness of detail and he or she usually becomes the central or the focus of the story. The importance of major beginning until the end of the story. On the other hand, minor character or secondary character is a character which appears just in certain event and performs limited function in the story. However, minor characters are important to strengthen the development of major character since they become the background of the major character.
In addition, Foster (1927) distinguishes the characters into two kinds, namely flat and round character (as cited in Barnet, 2011, p. 358-359). A flat character is relatively simple and static. It usually has only one trait or feature and does not change as the story progresses. Compared to flat character, a round character is presented with several traits. It is likely to be complex and dynamic, in which the character changes at the end of the story.
3. Theory of Characterization
Characterization has an important role in a novel. Kennedy and Gioia (2011) define characterization as a technique used by the author to create, reveal, or develop the characters (p. 106). This is supported by Rohrberger and Woods (1971) who declare that characterization is a process in which the author creates a character. It means that the author can create the living characters which will influence the reader’s perspective on a literary work through characterization.
In characterizing an individual in literary works, the author may use some methods. Murphy (1972) proposes nine ways in which an author conveys the personalities of the characters in order to be understandable for the readers. It can attribute which may refer to the way character’s dresses. The authors also can give the readers direct knowledge about the character from what he or she is saying and thinking about. Past life of the character also gives some hints of events that contribute in shaping the character. Besides, the author can describe the character indirectly through the eyes and opinions of other characters. It can be seen through conversation of others and things they say about him or her. Moreover, the author can present his or her comment on the character directly in order to make the character is easy to be understood. Also, the author can give clues of one’s character by presenting how a person reacts to various situation and conflict and describing that person’s mannerism, habits, or unusual features (pp. 161-173).
It means that the author can show the character directly and indirectly. Both of them are used to make the readers understand the character of the story. By understanding the character, the readers are able to imagine what kind of person he or she is.
4. Theory of Human Needs
Maslow (1954) develops hierarchy of needs which becomes the most popular theory of human needs. The basis of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is that human beings are motivated by unsatisfied needs, and that the needs on the lowest stage should be satisfied first before the higher needs can be fulfilled. According to Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” (1954), there are five stages in hierarchy of needs. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is presented in the shape of a pyramid that bottom and the highest of need is placed at the top of the pyramid. According to Maslow (as cited in Feist, 2011, p.280-284), those five basic needs are:
a. Physiological Needs Physiological needs are the basic, lowest and strongest one in the hierarchy of needs. This need covers the basic life needs such as water, food, oxygen, and so on. These needs must be fulfilled at some minimal level by each human in his or her life before someone is able to move to the higher level. If these needs are not fulfilled yet, the person will be not motivated to fulfill the higher level of needs. Physiological needs differ from other needs because it is the only needs which can be satisfied or even overly satisfied. Besides, physiological needs are able to reappear because of its recurring nature.
b. Safety Needs After the physiological needs are fulfilled, human will start to pursue the higher level of needs which is safety or security needs. This includes physical security, stability, dependency, protection, and freedom from threatening forces i.e. war, terrorism, illness, fear, anxiety, danger, chaos and natural disaster.
c. Love and Belongingness Needs Once the safety needs are fulfilled, people become motivated by love and belongingness needs. Humans need to feel a sense of belonging and acceptance, which is expected to be found both in one’s society and family. Besides, they need to love and be loved by others. Love and belongingness needs cover the desire for friendship, the wish for a mate and children, the need to belong to family, a club, a neighborhood, or a nation. Deprivation to this need will lead to loneliness, social anxiety and clinical depression.
d. Esteem Needs To the extent that people satisfy their love and belongingness needs, they start to pursue esteem needs, which include self-respect, confidence, competence, and knowledge. Maslow divides two level of esteem needs namely reputation and self-esteem. Reputation is the perception of prestige or recognition achieved by a person which is seen by the eyes of others. Meanwhile, self- esteem is a person’s own feeling of worth and confidence. When this need is met, people will be confident and valuable. On the other hand, people with low self-esteem will show lack of confidence in themselves and often believe that they are unworthy of the attention or regard of other people. This can lead to isolation and loneliness.
e. Self-actualization Needs The last and the highest needs in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs are the self- actualization needs. This includes self- fulfillment, the realization of all one’s potential, and a desire to become creative in the full sense of the word. These needs are psychological needs which develop and exploit all of his or her capabilities, potentialities, and talents to be everything he or she wants. It will enable a person to improve him or herself thoroughly and reach a healthy mental condition.
5. Review about Loneliness
There are many reviews about loneliness proposed by experts which is related to the topic of this study. This part presents a review about loneliness used in conducting and supporting this study. They are definitions of loneliness, types of loneliness, causes of loneliness, and the effects of loneliness.
a. Definitions of Loneliness Human being needs to interact with others by establishing relationships.
Establishing relationships with others is a universal and fundamental human need. People who have difficulty in establishing relationships will have negative effects, which is likely to be loneliness. Loneliness is a psychological experience which occurs in human being’s life and it is typically an unpleasant experience. Many different definitions of loneliness have been offered by researchers. Peplau and Perlman (1982) define loneliness as a feeling which appears whenever a person is unable to attain his or her desired relationship (as cited in Baron, 1974, p. 521).
This is supported by Kimnel and Weiner (1985), who define loneliness as an unpleasant experience because of a discrepancy between one’s actual relationship and desired companionship (p. 330). In addition, Baron and Byrne (1987) state that loneliness can be a situation when a person feels isolated and friendless although he or she is in the midst of crowd (p. 521). In conclusion, loneliness is a situation when a person is friendless or a situation in which a person has inability to fulfill his or her desired relationship.
People can be alone without being lonely. According to Baron and Byrne (1987), being alone is different from feeling lonely (p. 523). It is supported by Tillich (1959), who also distinguishes solitude and loneliness (as cited in Vanhalst, 2012, p.4). He explains that solitude expresses the joy of being alone while loneliness expresses the pain of feeling alone. Many people prefer solitude; it is when they choose to be alone but they do not feel lonely. For instance, a person is able to make friends and interact with them well and yet prefer to spend some times alone. It is usually done in order to spend leisure time in solitary activities such as pursuing a hobby, reading a book, listening to music, or having a self-reflection.
b. Types of Loneliness
Many social scientists have identified various forms of loneliness. In Perlman and Peplau (1984), there are three dimensions which divide loneliness into different types (as cited in Peplau and Goldston, 1984, p. 16). These dimensions have to do with the positive or negative nature, the source, and the duration of loneliness.
The first dimension was suggested by Moustakas (1961), namely positive or negative nature (as cited in Peplau and Goldston, 1984, p. 16). He divides loneliness into existential loneliness and loneliness anxiety. According to Moustakas (1961), existential loneliness is a part of human condition which is inevitable and able to lead to positive experiences, for instance: periods of self- confrontation. In contrast, loneliness anxiety is a negative experience as the result of alienation.
The second way of categorizing forms of loneliness can be seen from its source. Weiss (1973) distinguishes loneliness into emotional loneliness and social loneliness (as cited in Peplau and Goldston, 1984, p. 17). Emotional loneliness is a subjective feeling manifested by the absence of a personal or close relationship.
The antecedents of this kind of loneliness are divorce, bereavement, etc. Meanwhile, social loneliness is a subjective feeling caused by the lack of a sufficient number of friends or an adequate network of social relationship. The antecedents of this form of loneliness are losing of a job, being rejected by peers, feeling unacceptable and not belonging to a community.
The third dimension is duration of loneliness. Young (1982) divides loneliness into three types (as cited in Peplau and Goldston, 1984, p. 17).
Transient loneliness or everyday loneliness is the shortest duration of loneliness which includes brief and occasional lonely moods. Situational or transitional loneliness occurs when people who have satisfying relationships have to undergo a specific change, such as divorce, bereavement or moving to a new town. The last is chronic loneliness which occurs when a person lacks of satisfactory social relations for a period of two or more years.
c. The Causes of Loneliness
Many factors can contribute to the experience of loneliness. Perlman and precipitating factors (p. 23). Predisposing factors are factors that make people vulnerable to loneliness while precipitating factors are factors that trigger loneliness.
The first predisposing factor is a person’s characteristics which are associated with loneliness such as shyness, low self-esteem, self-consciousness, introversion, and lack of social skill. Situational factors are able to predispose people to loneliness. Some basic situational factors are time, distance and money.
For instance, a student who takes a lot of courses and gets tight schedule may have little time to make friends and interact well with his or her friends.
Cultural differences in values also considered as predisposing factors. Perlman and Peplau (1998) consider that cultural differences in value seem likely to affect the experience of loneliness (p. 573). One example of culture differences that can lead to loneliness is individualistic values. American culture has been characterized as being individualistic and it influences their values. American values encourage personal independence and the attainment of individual ’s goals. In contrast, other cultures in Asia are more collectivistic where the values encourage loyalty to family and harmony in social relations. The individualistic in American culture and the collectivistic in Asian Culture are the examples of predisposing factors towards loneliness.
According to Perlman and Peplau (1984), precipitating factor is an event which usually changes a person’s actual or desired/needed relationship (p. 23).
The examples of precipitating factors are the loss of an important relationship has found that leaving family and friends to begin college, breaking up of romantic relationship, and having problems with friends or relative are the three most frequent events that precipitate loneliness among college students (as cited in Peplau and Goldston, 1984, p. 26). Indirectly, it can be said that precipitating factors mostly come from a troubled relationship with others.
Perlman and Peplau (1998) say that loneliness can also arise from the nature of a person’s actual relationship and dissatisfaction with the quality of existing relationship. In addition, Perlman and Peplau (1984) also state that loneliness results from a mismatch between a person’s actual relationship and a person’s needed or desired relationship. In short, a failure to establish desired relationship and dissatisfaction with an actual relationship can lead to loneliness.
d. The Effects of Loneliness
Loneliness is an unpleasant experience and it is usually seen as a negative experience with negative effects as well. Russel (1982) mentions that people with loneliness usually feel depressed, anxious, unhappy, and shy. In addition, Jones, Freeman, and Goswick (1981) also mention that those who are lonely express low self-esteem (as cited in Baron and Byrne, 1974, p. 522). Those negative feelings of lonely people will make them have difficulty to communicate and incapable of making and keeping friends, which may lead to antisocial behavior.
A lonely individual is likely to feel left out and spend time without companionship each day because loneliness may cause the inability of are lonely would have fewer friends and engage in fewer social activities (as cited in Baron and Byrne, 1994, p. 522). Having no one to talk to and no one to share with are painful since the lonely people distance themselves from others. Herbert (1995) also adds that social phobia is mostly likely to develop when lonely young people begin to distance themselves from others in adolescent stage (as cited in Baron and Byrne, 1994, p. 284). People with social phobia will avoid others as a way to protect themselves from embarrassments and humiliation.
According to Kimnel and Weiner (1985), loneliness also fosters the feeling of alienation and social inadequacy. Those who are lonely usually express low self-esteem and lack of confidence, which make them feel inferior to other people and believe that they are unworthy of attention. Page (1991) mentions that an extremely lonely person with worst feeling of despair considers that life is hopeless and it can sometimes lead to suicide (as cited in Baron and Byrne, 1994, p. 284). In conclusion, loneliness is an unpleasant experience since it has negative effects for the person who has loneliness problem.
C. Theoretical Framework
Based on the formulated problems, this study intends to reveal the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe, which is depicted in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. In order to find the causes of loneliness and help the writer to answer the research problems, psychological approach is used as the approach of this study. Psychological approach enables the writer to explore the based on the fact that this study focuses on a psychological problem which is about loneliness.
There are some theories applied to analyze the novel and answer the problem formulation. Theory of character and characterization are used to answer the first question of the problem formulation. It is used as the basis in analyzing the characteristic of Toru Watanabe as the major character in Norwegian Wood novel. Toru’s characteristic can be identified from his past life, personal description, reactions, speech, thoughts, and character as seen by another.
Therefore, in order to cope with the analysis of the character, it is important to present theories related to the character.
The writer uses review of related study, theory of human needs, and review of loneliness to answer the second question of the problem formulation.
The review of related study will be useful in analyzing the leading factors of loneliness experienced by Toru Watanabe. Moreover, understanding the leading factors of Toru Watanabe’s loneliness will also help the writer to determine the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru. Theory of human needs and review of loneliness are beneficial to analyze the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe in order to answer the second question of this study.
CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY This chapter contains the methodology of the study, which is divided into
three sections. They are the object of the study, the approach of the study, and the method of the study. The object of the study presents the description of the novel.
Moreover, the focus of the study is also presented in this section. The approach of the study explains the approach that is applied in this study. The last method of the study explains the steps used in conducting the study, such as of the data gathering and analysis of the work.
A. Object of the Study
The object of this study is a novel entitled Norwegian Wood, written by a well-known Japanese author named Haruki Murakami. Norwegian Wood is a translated novel and originally published in Japan as Noruwei no Mori in 1987.
Noruwei no Mori has been translated into English twice. This study used the
second translation by Jay Rubin which was first published in 2000. Published by Vintage International, the novel consists of 389 pages that are divided into 11 chapters. This story was also adapted to a movie with the same title with the novel, Norwegian Wood, which was released in 2010.
Norwegian Wood is narrated by Toru Watanabe as the protagonist, who at the age
of 37 recalls his days as a college student in the 1960s in Tokyo. Toru is a young
Kizuki. He falls in love with Naoko, Kizuki’s girlfriend who is damaged by Kizuki’s suicide and struggling with her depression. The death of Kizuki affects Toru and Naoko deeply. Both of Toru and Naoko decide to attend college in Tokyo where they can escape from their past memories. Moreover, Kizuki’s death also makes Toru experience loneliness during his college time. The further information about the author and the summary of Norwegian Wood can be seen on Appendices I and II (pp. 70 - 74).
B. Approach of the Study
The study is focused on the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe, the major character in Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. Therefore, psychological approach is applied in this study. This approach aims to examine and analyze the novel from psychological point of view of human beings. In this approach, psychological theories are used to know human behavior and motivation that may affect someone’s personality in the literary works. The psychological approach is suitable in this study because it analyzes the psychological condition, such as the characters’ behavior, thoughts, personality, and motivation. Thus, the approach helps to reveal the characteristic of Toru Watanabe and the causes of loneliness.
C. Method of the Study
Library research was applied in this study in order to identify the sources divided into two, namely primary source and secondary sources. The primary source was a novel entitled Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami. Meanwhile, the secondary sources of this study were books, journals, and online references that contained the related theories about character, characterization, and human needs and reviews of loneliness. The data collected from the secondary sources were used to support the analysis.
This study was conducted by following several steps. The first step was reading the novel thoroughly for several times for the sake of gaining a better comprehension of the character and the story as well. In this step, a number of quotations from the novel were marked to collect the data. The second step was collecting theories and reviews related to the study in order to support the analysis part. In the next step, the related theories and reviews were applied to analyze the problem formulation. The character and characterization theories were applied to discover how Toru Watanabe is described in the story. Meanwhile, theory of human needs and review of loneliness were implemented to identify the causes of loneliness. After discovering the causes of loneliness, the conclusions were drawn.
In order to verify the result of the study, a verification process was taken after the analysis was finished and the conclusions were drawn. An expert in the field of psychology was requested to comment on the result of the study which concerned with the psychology of human being, i.e. Toru Watanabe. Lastly, the last part was revising the study to get the final version of the study.
CHAPTER IV ANALYSIS This chapter aims to answer the formulated problems which have been
stated in Chapter I. It is divided into two parts. The first part describes Toru Watanabe as the major character in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood.
Meanwhile, the second part analyzes the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe.
A. The Description of Toru Watanabe
This section deals with the characteristic of Toru Watanabe as a major character in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. According to Henkle (1977), major character has fullness of details and becomes the focus of the story (p. 88). Toru is the major character of the story since he dominates the story and he appears from the beginning until the end of the story. He also deserves the fullest attention because he has a crucial role in shaping and making up the story. The story itself tells about how Toru experiences loneliness during his college days.
The story begins when Toru, the narrator of the story, recalls the events that happened to him when he was a college student in the 1960s. He is haunted by the suicide of his best friend named Kizuki and the sad feeling stays in his heart for a long time. During the story, Toru struggles to escape from his past memories, tries to find himself, and survive from various problems. He begins to Toru’s journeys as he is unsure of what he wants to do with his life, but towards the ends he knows how to deal with the situation and comes out to be stronger.
Thus, those evidences lead the writer to a conclusion that Toru is the major character of the story.
Toru is also considered as a round character in the story because he changes at the end of the story. It is supported by Foster (1972) who states that a round character is presented with several traits and it changes at the end of the story. In Norwegian Wood, Toru is described as a loner person who loves being alone. Although he is a loner, he makes some friends yet his friendship is limited to some persons only. Moreover, Toru is also unable to open up his heart and speak honestly about his feeling since Kizuki’s death. Therefore, Toru finds it difficult to get closer with others. Mihalo (2009) also states in his study that Toru shows a failure to communicate with others because of his loneliness. However, in the end of the story, Toru who gets involved with Midori finally conveys his feeling towards Midori. Mihalo (2009) says that if being lonely means caring about oneself, then a sign of overcoming loneliness is conveying feeling towards others
. Toru who is unable to speak honestly about his feeling since Kizuki’s death finally portrays any internal feeling besides loneliness. Thus, it can be concluded that Toru is a round character because he changes his personality as a person who is unable to open up his heart by conveying his feeling for others.
In order to analyze the characteristics of Toru Watanabe, the writer uses theory of characterization proposed by Murphy. According to Murphy (1972), Those are personal description, character as seen by another, speech, past life, conversations of others, reactions, direct comment, thoughts, and mannerisms. In order to determine the character of Toru, several ways of Murphy’s theory are applied in the study, i. e. personal description, character as seen by another, speech, past life, reactions, and thoughts.
1. A Loner
Throughout the story, Toru is told as a loner person who avoids the company of others and tends to isolate himself. He always spends his time alone and his socialization is limited only to some of his friends. Murphy (1972) states that past life gives information to the reader in order to obtain a clue or information about events which will help to shape a person’s character (p. 166). In his family, Toru is the one and only child who never once felt deprived or wished to have siblings because he is satisfied of being alone (p. 285). Toru’s past life shows that he used to be alone since he was a child and he does not have any wishes to have siblings because he feels alright. That is one of clues how he is depicted as a loner.
Toru’s character as a person who loves being alone can also be seen from his speech. According to Murphy (1972), one’s character can be seen when a character speaks, has conversation with others, and puts forward an opinion (p. 164). Based on Toru’s conversation with Midori, a class-mate in his drama class, Toru is described as a person who enjoys being alone. When Toru talks with
“Do you always travel alone like that?” “Uh-huh.” “You enjoy solitude?” she asked, leaning her check on her hand.
“Travelling alone, eating alone, sitting off by yourself in lecture halls…” “Nobody likes being alone that much. I don’t go out of my way to make friends, that’s all. It just leads to disappointment.” (pp. 70-71).
Toru’s conversation with Midori depicts that Toru does not want to insist himself to make friends because he thinks it will hurt and disappoint him. He is afraid of being left behind after he finally gets friends and builds a good friendship. Besides, Toru still has an emotional wound after Kizuki’s suicide since Kizuki is the one and only best friend he has.
Toru also confesses his reason why he likes to do things alone when he talks with Reiko, Naoko’s roommate in sanatorium. When Toru has a chance to visit Naoko’s sanatorium, Toru has a conversation with Reiko and he explains why he tends to be a loner and it is because he loves to do things alone by himself.
Moreover, Toru also says that he is not good at playing games with other people and he cannot get into them as well.
“Just kidding,” she said. “Don’t get mad. But really, though, what are you good at?” “Nothing special. I have things I like to do.” “For instance?” “Hiking trips. Swimming, Reading.” “You like to do things alone, then?” “I guess so. I could never get excited about games you play with other people. I can’t get excited about games you play with other people. I can’t get into them. I lose interest.” (p. 153)
The previous excerpt reveals that Toru loves to do things alone because Toru loses his interest in activities with other people.
Another proof reveals that Toru is truly a loner can be seen from his senior unsociable characteristic. Toru does not have a lot of friends at school and he only has Kizuki and Naoko as his close friends. It is proved from how Toru says about his relationship with o thers. “And Kizuki was my only friend. There was never anybody I could really call a friend, before him or after him.” (p. 170). His utterance points out that Kizuki is Toru’s best and only friend in high school and he does not have a close friend like Kiz uki after Kizuki’s death. Toru also makes friend with
Naoko who was Kizuki’s girlfriend. The three of them always stay together most of the time and embrace happy life. Unfortunately, the relationship between Toru and Naoko does not last for long because Kizuki has committed suicide leaving Toru and Naoko to a long life without him. Since there is nothing to bond them, both Toru and Naoko go their separate ways.
Murphy (1972) also says that a person’s character can be seen from what a person is thinking about (p. 171). In this case, Toru is described as a loner from the way he thinks of his preference for living. When Toru moves to Tokyo as a freshman and chooses a place to live in, he thinks that it will be better for him to rent an apartment where he can live alone. Although he is new to Tokyo and new to live alone, Toru does not seem to be afraid and he chooses to live alone rather than shares a room with a friend. On the other hand, his anxious parents have found a private dormitory to live in due to its low expenses and facilities.
For my part, I would have preferred to rent an apartment and live in comfortable solitude, but knowing what my parents had to spend on matriculation fees and tuition at the private university I was attending, I was in no position to insist. And besides, I really didn’t care where I live. (p. 14) Toru’s preference for living alone rather than live in the dormitory with a roommate reveals that Toru enjoys of being alone. Mihalo (2009) also states in his study that Toru’s preference for living alone proves that Toru readily recognizes his inclination towards spending life alone. Thus, it shows that not being engaged with other people by living alone is something that Toru willingly decides to do.
In the dormitory, Toru makes a good friend with a guy named Nagasawa and both of them share the same interest to read books. Nagasawa is the only person in the dormitory who has read Toru’s favorite book at that time entitled
The Great Gatsby . Nagasawa occasionally takes Toru with him when he goes to
the bars and picks up girls for one night stand, but Toru soon does not find satisfaction by sleeping with other girls and becomes tired of this habit. Toru thinks that his relationship with Nagasawa stands in stark contrast to his relationship with Kizuki (p. 43). Although Toru is quite acknowledged in many ways, he never opens his heart and discusses his personal life or problems with Nagasawa because Toru ever saw him drunk and tormenting a girl. Moreover, Toru still cannot open up his heart towards Nagasawa because of Kizuki’s suicide. Toru thinks that he lost one person to whom he could speak honestly of his feelings when he lost Kizuki (p. 56). Toru and Nagasawa never really connect and they do not have deeper understanding of one another because Toru never told about his personal things to Nagasawa.
Based on Toru’s thought, Toru seems reluctant to open up to anyone after the loss of his best friend.
Toru’s inability to show his openness and speak honestly about his
(1972) explains that a person’s character can be described through the opinions of other characters (p. 162). In this case, Nagasawa comments on how tight-lipped Toru is when it comes to his personal life (p. 272). Toru never tells Nagasawa about his personal life although they already get along well together.
Toru’s reluctance to be open is also experienced by Midori, a girl from Toru’s drama class. When Midori has her problems, Toru listens to her and even helps her. However, when Toru has his problems, he just keeps it by himself and is unwilling to tell Midori. The next paragraph is an excerpt from
Midori’s letter that proves that Kizuki’s death affects Toru’s openness with other people.
But don’t get me wrong. I’m not totally mad at you. I’m just sad. You were so nice to me when I was having my problems, but now that you’re having yours, it seems t here’s not a thing I can do for you. You’re locked up in all that little world of yours, and when I try knocking on the door, you just sort of look up for second and go right back inside. (p. 334)
Toru’s inability to speak honestly about his feeling makes a distance between him and others around him. Besides, Toru’s choice to be a secretive person who does not share his personal life proves that Toru never really seems to form a close friendship with those around him since Kizuki’s suicide. As a result, Toru tends to be alone instead of being with his friends.
In Norwegian Wood, Toru is always alone whenever he is. Toru recognizes that he makes conscious choice to be alone. The description of Toru as a loner can be seen from his reaction as what Murphy (1972) states that the way a person reacts to various situations and events gives the readers information about a person’s character (p. 168). Toru starts his new life in dormitory and university. decides to establish a proper distance between himself and everything else (p.33). He decides to distance himself and everything else because of Kizuki’s suicide. The loss of Kizuki makes Toru believe that Toru will forget Kizuki’s death by keeping a distance from anyone and everything else.
Living in dormitory and going to the university do not make Toru become more sociable as well. Toru hardly knows anyone in the dormitory, except Nagasawa and Storm Trooper, because Toru tends to keep a distance from him and others (p. 39). Storm Trooper is Toru’s stuttering and fastidious roommate.
He is called as Storm Trooper because he always wears the same outfit when he goes to classes: white shirt, black pants, black shoes, navy blue sweater, a uniform jacket, and black briefcase like a typical right-wing student. He wears that kind of uniform because he does not want to be bothered choosing clothes (p. 21). Storm Trooper actually seems to be a nice guy because he always keeps the room clean, like washing the curtain and airing their mattresses.
After Toru’s first year of college, Storm Trooper moves out from dormitory without any clear explanation and leaves the room entirely to Toru. Although his roommate is annoying, Toru thinks and even misses Storm Trooper after he is leaving. But still, he enjoys living alone in the dormitory (pp. 66-67).
During his college life, Toru also tries to keep a distance from others in college. He goes to class more faithfully than ever although the lectures are boring and he will sit by himself in the very front row of the lecture hall, speak to no one, and eat alone (p. 56). It proves that Toru decides to isolate himself from those his classmates by being alone in the class and cafeteria and talking to no one. In addition, Mihalo (2009) also states in his study that Toru prevents himself from building a relationship and interacting with his classmate which makes him feel lonely. It shows that his act of isolating himself from others is a conscious choice he has made. Besides, it also seems that Toru does not show any efforts to make friends as well.
Through character ’s past life, speech, thought, reaction and character as seen by another
, it can be concluded that Toru is a loner. Kizuki’s death leads Toru into loneliness in many ways. He is more interested in being alone than spending time with other people. Even when he has a friend, he is unable to open up his heart and share his feeling with anyone because he has already lost Kizuki, the person to whom he is able to speak honestly about his feeling.
2. An Ordinary Person
In Norwegian wood, Toru says that he is an ordinary person. The description of Toru as an ordinary person can be seen from his speech as Murphy (1972) states that a person’s character can be presented through what he or she says (p. 164). Toru says that he is just an ordinary guy like everybody else when Midori, his classmate, says that he is cool and the way he speaks is like Humphrey Bogart (p. 70). Besides, when Naoko wants to know more about Toru, Toru tells her that he is just an ordinary guy who comes from an ordinary family and has ordinary education, ordinary face, ordinary grades, and ordinary thoughts in his head (p. 148).
Toru’s description about himself describes that he is just an ordinary guy.
According to Murphy (1972), the way a person reacts to various situations and events also gives the readers information about a person’s character (p. 168).
When Toru is in college time, he is an ordinary youth at a revolution time where the student strikes happen and it is proven from the way he reacts toward those situations. Toru only watches his fellow students protest about the “established order”, then slinks back to class so as not to fall the course (pp. 64-65). He is detached from the student strikes and revolutionary movement which occurs around him. He manages to isolate himself more than ever from his classmate. None of the students speak to him and he does not speak to none of them as well (p. 65). Instead of joining the student strike, Toru chooses to study and attend the classes.
Toru’s reaction towards the student strikes shows that he is an ordinary student.
Murphy (1972) also says that a person’s appearance helps the readers to obtain the description of one’s character (p. 161). In Norwegian Wood, Toru’s simplicity can be seen from the way he gets dressed. When Toru is invited to have dinner with Nagasawa and Hatsumi in a fancy French restaurant to celebrate Nagasawa’s passing of the Foreign Service exam, Toru only wears an ordinary blue blazer while Nagasawa wears an expensive-looking gray suit and Hatsumi wears gold earring, a beautiful deep blue dress, and a pair of tasteful red pumps (p. 270). From the way Toru gets dressed, it describes his simplicity. As conclusion, the previous descriptions of Toru which is based on his speech, reaction, and personal description prove that Toru is an ordinary person.
3. A Caring Person
Living in the dormitory makes Toru think that he has bad luck since he shares a room with an annoying and meticulous friend, who is known as Storm Trooper. Storm Trooper always wakes up earlier and does Radio Calisthenics which broadcasts every morning in the radio. Storm Trooper’s morning habit annoys Toru who is still sleepy, especially when Storm Trooper does the jumping part that makes the bed bounce every time he hits the floor. Although his roommate always annoys him, it does not make Toru be ignorant towards Storm Trooper.
According to Murphy (1972), a person’s reaction towards particular situation can give clues to the readers about a person’s character (p. 168). Toru’s caring towards Storm Trooper is depicted from his reaction when Storm Trooper is sick. Toru decides to nurse his sick roommate and even cancels his appointment to watch a concert with Naoko.
At the end of January, Storm Trooper went to bed with a raging fever, which meant I had to stand Naoko up that day. I had gone to a lot of trouble to get my hands on some free tickets for a concert. Naoko had been especially eager to go because the orchestra was performing one of her favorites, Brahms’s fourth symphony. But with Storm Trooper tossing around in bed on the verge of what looked like an agonizing death, I couldn’t just go off and leave him, and I couldn’t find anyone crazy enough to nurse him in my place. I bought some ice and used several layers of vinyl bags to hold it on his forehead, wiped his sweat with cold towels, took his temperature every hour, and even changed his undershirt for him. (p. 49) Toru is unable to leave Storm Trooper alone with his severe fever. He decides to nurse his roommate by himself and cancels his appointment he has already made with Naoko although he has gone some problems to get free tickets. Toru knows that the other dormitory residents are unwilling to take care of his sick roommate.
Thus, Toru passionately nurses his sick roommate by giving a hot compress, taking his temperature even changing the undershirt. What he has done for Storm Trooper proves that Toru cares for Storm Trooper although his roommate is an annoying and weird person.
Toru has a good friend since senior high school; she is Naoko, Kizu ki’s ex-girlfriend who he falls in love with. Once they move to Tokyo, Toru and Naoko stumble into each other on a crowded Tokyo train and quickly revive their friendship. Since then, Toru subsequently accompanies Naoko to have an afternoon stroll every Sunday
. When it comes to Naoko’s twentieth birthday, Toru manages to have a little birthday celebration for her.
It rained on her birthday. After classes, I bought a cake nearby and took the streetcar to her apartment. We ought to have a celebration, I had said. I probably would have wanted the same thing if our position had been reversed. It must be hard to pass your twentieth birthday alone. (p. 50)
The excerpt presents that Toru knows how it feels to spend and celebrate birthday alone because Toru tries to put himself in Naoko’s shoes and understand what
Naoko feels. Therefore , Toru comes to Naoko’s apartment, brings a birthday cake with twenty candles and they have a little birthday party together. From his reactions, it proves that Toru is a caring person, despite his feeling towards Naoko.
Toru also cares about Nagasawa’s girlfriend named Hatsumi. The way
Toru reacts towards the situation proves that Toru cares about Hatsumi after she has a fight with Nagasawa. Toru shows his caring by accompanying and comforting Hatsumi.
I flagged down a cab and let Hatsumi in first. “Anyhow,” I said to Nagasawa, “I’ll make sure she gets home.” “Sorry to put you through this,” said Nagasawa, but I could see that he was already thinking about something else.
Once inside the cab, I asked Hatsumi, “Where do you want to go? Back to Ebisu?” Her apartment was in Ebisu. She shook her head. “O.K. Want to go for a drink somewhere?” “Yes,” she said with a nod. “Shibuya,” I told the driver. (p. 279)
The conversation shows that Toru wants to help Hatsumi by accompanying her. It happens when Nagasawa invites Toru to have a celebration dinner with him and Hatsumi, in which Nagasawa and Hatsumi end up in a fight because Nagasawa does not care enough for Hatsumi. The talk, more or less, is about Nagasawa’s habit of sleeping with random girls and sometimes taking Toru along and it raises the fight between Hatsumi and Nagasawa. Since Hatsumi is angry with Nagasawa, she asks Toru, instead of Nagasawa, to see her home. Therefore, Toru tries to comfort Hatsumi by accompanying her to have some drinks in a bar and shoot a game of pool to cheer her up. Toru also promises Nagasawa to make sure that Hatsumi will get home safely.
Toru does not only care towards Storm Trooper, Naoko, and Hatsumi but also to his classmate named Midori. In drama class, Toru meets Midori, a friendly and outgoing girl who falls in love with him. He finds himself attracted to Midori help their hospitalized father to run a small family book store after their mother’s death. One day, Midori asks Toru to accompany her to visit her sick father in the hospital. He knows that Midori becomes busier since her father is hospitalized. She comes to the hospital four days in a week, and on the other days she watches the bookstore and goes to the class as well. Thus, Toru asks Midori to take a walk and relax by herself.
“Get out of here for a couple of hours and go take a walk,” I said. “I’ll take care of your father for a while.” “Why?” “You need to get away from the hospital and relax by yourself – not talk to anybody, just clear your mind out.” Midori thought about it for a minute and nodded. “Hmm, you may be right.
But do you know what to do? How to take care of him?” “I’ve been watching. I’ve pretty much got it. You check the intravenous thing, give him water, wipe the sweat off, and help him spit phlegm. The bedpan’s under the bed, and if he gets hungry I feed him the rest of his lunch. Anything I can’t figure out I’ll ask the nurse.” (p. 248)
The previous conversation between Toru and Midori proves Toru’s characteristic as a caring person. It is supported by Murphy (1972), who states that the authors can give the readers direct knowledge about a person’s character from what he or she is saying (p. 164). In the conversation, Toru asks Midori to take a walk and relax by herself because he knows that Midori has been busy and she needs some time to be alone. Toru also cares about Midori by offering himself to take care of Midori’s father while she is out. Although Toru has not met Midori’s father before, Toru is willing to take care of him. Besides, Toru has already known what he should do since he has already watched the nurse who takes care of Midori’s father.
Toru’s characteristic as a caring person is also depicted from his acts to Midori’s father. After Midori has left, Toru tries to speak with Midori’s father when he does not sleep or ask some questions to make sure whether he is hungry or thirsty. Toru is very successful at taking care of Midori’s father, including getting him to eat a fresh cucumber. Midori is surprised knowing that her father eats much since everyone has tried hard to get him to eat anything and Toru easily gets him to eat a whole cucumber (p. 256). Furthermore, Toru also offers some helps for Midori by saying “If I can be of any help, I’ll come next week, too. I’d like to see your father again.” (p. 260). All that Toru has done for Midori and her father shows that he cares to others and he has done a good job while taking care of Midori’s father.
Several days after Toru’s visit in the hospital, Midori’s father has passed away. Toru meets Midori after she is back from her trip and accompanies her to have some drinks until Midori gets drunk.
“Sorry,” she said. “I fell asleep on the toilet.” “Are you O.K.?” I asked, putting my coat over her shoulders. “Not really,” she said. “I’ll take you home. You just have to get home, take a nice, long bath, and go to bed. You’re exhausted.” (p. 299)
The conversation between Toru and Midori proves that Toru cares for Midori. Toru does not only accompany Midori but also makes sure that Midori is alright since he knows that Midori has bad times after her father has passed away. His anxiety and suggestion for Midori shows that he really cares of his friend.
In Norwegian Wood, Toru is also described as a caring person from a the author can describe the character indirectly through the eyes and opinions of other characters (p. 162). It can be seen through the conversation of others and the things they say about him or her. Hatsumi says that Toru is a sincere and caring person (pp. 272-
273). Hatsumi is a steady girlfriend of Nagasawa, Toru’s friend in the dormitory. She is a kind and charming person who sticks by Nagasawa despite his callousness towards herself. Toru resents the way Nagasawa treats Hatsumi because Toru feels Nagasawa is unkind and Nagasawa takes her for granted by sleeping around with other girls
From the previous analyses, the conclusion which can be drawn is that Toru is a caring person. Toru’s caring towards other characters can be seen from his reaction, his speech, and opinion from other characters. All things that Toru has done for Naoko, Storm Trooper, Midori, Mi dori’s father, and Hatsumi proves that Toru cares about those people. He is willing to help them although most of them are new people in his life.
4. A Self-Doubted Person
Toru is a self-doubted person who often shows the acts of doubting his capability. The description of Toru as a self-doubted person can be seen from his thought. It is supported by Murphy who states that the way a person thinks gives the readers information about a person’s character (1972, p. 173). Toru’s self- doubted characteristic is depicted from his thought in the following quotation “The others in the dorm thought I wanted to be a writer because I was always
(p. 39). Since Toru is interested in spending his spare time by reading books, his friends in dormitory think that he wants to be a writer. However, Toru says that there is nothing he wants to be. Unlike other students in his age, Toru does not have main goals nor does have intentions of becoming successful.
As a college student, Toru decides to major in drama. However, Toru does not have any particular passion for the subject itself. When Toru is asked by Storm Trooper whether he likes plays or not, he says that he does not really like it and he majors drama because he has curiosity than passion for the subject.
Toru’s answer makes Storm Trooper confuse but Toru does not have some convincing explanation to answer Storm Trooper’s question (p. 21). In addition, during the college time, Toru thinks that college education is meaningless and he has nothing to accomplish in society that would require him to quit school right away (pp. 65- 66). His thoughts explain that he does not have any goals to accomplish and intention to do something that leads him into pessimism.
Back to senior high school time, Toru has met Kizuki who becomes his best friend. For Kizuki, Toru is the one and only real friend at school and vice versa. However, Toru feels that he does not deserve to be considered as a best friend. The following excerpt tells that Toru doubts himself why such a smart and popular guy like Kizuki chooses him as a best friend.
I was his only real friends at school. I could never understand why such a smart and capable talker did not turn his talents to the broader world around him but remained satisfied to concentrate on our little trio. Nor could I understand why he picked me to be his friend. I was just an ordinary kid who liked to read books and listen to music and didn’t stand out in any way that would prompt someone like Kizuki to pay attention to Toru thinks that he is unworthy to be chosen as a friend because he is just an ordinary guy. Besides, it also shows that Toru has a thought that he is unworthy of other’s attention.
Toru also wonders why Nagasawa wants to be Toru’s friend when Toru meets Nagasawa in the dormitory. Toru sees Nagasawa as a person who has a certain inborn quality that draws people to him and makes them follow him (p.
42). Nagasawa is a handsome and smart guy who loves seducing different girls each weekend. Having a friend like Nagasawa makes Toru think that he is not worthy to be chosen as
Nagasawa’s friend since he is only a person with no distinc tive qualities (p. 43). From Toru’s thoughts, it proves that Toru is a self- doubted person because he thinks he is unworthy to make friend with a smart and charming guy.
In senior high school, Toru mostly spends his time with Kizuki and Naoko. Once, Naoko tries to arrange a double date for many times and brings her classmate for Toru. Toru considers that Naoko’s friends are pretty yet too refined for his taste since he feels better to get along with somewhat cruder girls from his public high school who are easier to talk to (p. 29). It implicitly conveys that Toru is not confident to have a date with a pretty girl.
The same situation also happens when Toru meets Hatsumi, Nagasawa’s girlfriend. The three of them meet for few times and share their stories. Once, Hatsumi tries to fix Toru up with a girl in her club. Therefore, they can go out on double dates. However, Toru feels that he is not capable to talk to and go on dates country (p. 48). In addition, Toru also explains to Hatsumi that what she does to match him with her friends is a waste of time because he is too poor to go out with super- rich girls from Hatsumi’s college (p. 271). Toru’s thought shows that he thinks he is unworthy to interacts girls from top university. Since Toru always thinks that he is unworthy of other’s attention, it makes him feel unconfident to talk or to interact with others who have higher status.
The conclusion which can be drawn from previous discussion is that Toru is a self-doubted person who always feels not unworthy of other’s attention and it is mostly seen from his thought. Toru thinks that he does not deserve of what he has had and thinks that he is not capable of what he does. As a result, he is not confident of himself and pessimistic. His pessimism also makes him do not have specific goals for his future life.
B. The Causes of Loneliness as Experienced by Toru Watanabe
This part is purposed to answer the second problem formulation which is about the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe. In order to find the causes of loneliness, theory of human needs and review of loneliness is applied in the analysis.
1. Lack of Companionship
Based on the findings of the first problem formulation, Toru Watanabe as the major character in Norwegian Wood is described as a loner who loves to be friend named Kizuki. Besides Kizuki, Toru also meet s Naoko, Kizuki’s girlfriend. Other than that, he does not have any friends in high school. The three of them stay together most of the time as a trio until one day Kizuki commits suicide which gives a lasting effect for both of them, especially on Naoko’s emotional stability.
Toru moves to Tokyo to start studying in the university and escape from his past life. In Tokyo, Toru starts his new life in college and dormitory after graduating from his senior high school. He also decides to stop taking everything seriously and establish proper distance between himself and everything else (p.
33). Toru seems still unable to make friends because he is left by his best friend. However, he is finally able to be friend with Storm Trooper, his stuttering roommate. After Toru’s first year of college, Storm Trooper is withdrawn from the dormitory and he leaves their room entirely to Toru. Since then, Toru spends his night by drinking alone and listening to music. Although he enjoys living alone in the dormitory, Toru thinks about Storm Trooper every now and then (pp. 66-67). When Toru thinks about Storm Trooper, it implicitly shows that he misses his roommate and it shows his longing for a friend.
The death of Kizuki gives tremendous effects for Kizuki, especially on how Toru relates himself with other people that eventually causes his loneliness.
Perlman and Peplau (1984) mention that one of the factors which triggers loneliness is the loss of an important relationship through death. After Kizuki’s death, Toru decides to isolate himself from interacting with others by establishing and only best friend he has, Toru feels that he loses one person to whom he could speak honestly of his feelings when Kizuki is dead (p. 56). As a result, Toru has difficulties to make friends and be open towards others. Therefore, it can be concluded that Kizuki’s death makes Toru experience his friendless situation and loneliness.
Kizuki’s death does not only affect Toru on how he tries to distance from others but also affects his relationship with Naoko. After Kizuki’s suicide, Toru and Naoko have not met for a year until they meet by a chance in Tokyo. The two of them spend more time together until one day Naoko leaves a letter for Toru, saying that she needs some time apart and decides to quit from college to go to a sanatorium. Unable to meet Naoko, Toru sends a letter to the sanatorium where Naoko stays. The next paragraph is an excerpt o f Toru’s letter for Naoko.
And every night I would think of you. Now that I can no longer see you, I realize how much I needed you. School is incredibly boring, but as a matter of self-discipline I am going to all my classes and doing all the assignments. Everything seems pointless since you left. I’d like to have a nice, long talk with you. If possible, I’d like to visit your sanatorium and see you for several hours. And, if possible, I’d like to go out walking with you side by side the way we used to. (p. 76) The excerpt depicts how Toru needs Naoko after she has left him to sanatorium.
Toru loses a person to whom he can have a nice long talk and he feels the world seems meaningless after Naoko has left.
Toru and Naoko exchange some letters every week. In another letter, Toru also writes that he misses Naoko sometimes and it is hard for him not being able to see her (p. 262). He also tells how lonely Sunday is without Naoko. According remember on the different routes they used to take in their Sunday walks around Tokyo (p. 263). Toru and Naoko are used to have a long walk and nice talk every Sunday afternoon. Therefore, Toru feels the sense of loneliness, especially every Sunday, after Naoko has left and it shows how much Toru misses Naoko.
During the absence of Naoko, Toru gets involved with Midori Kobayashi, his classmate from drama class. Both of them spend some times together by having lunch or conversation. Once, Midori does not come to college, he goes to cafeteria after class and eats a tasteless lunch alone (p. 106). He sits in the cafeteria and observes other students who look happy with their companion in a pleasant afternoon. When Toru sees this kind of scene, he feels lonely because others are happy with their companion and he thinks he is not the part of the happiness.
It was the usual noontime university scene, but as I sat watching it with renewed attention, I became aware of a certain fact. In his or her own way, each person I saw before me looked happy. Whether they were really happy or just looked it, I couldn’t tell. But they did look happy on this pleasant early afternoon at the end of September, and because of that I felt a kind of loneliness that was new to me, as if I were the only one here who was not truly part of the scene (p. 107)
The previous paragraph tells how Toru feels the sense of loneliness in the middle of a crowd. It is supported by Baron and Byrne (1987) who mention that loneliness can be a situation when a person feels isolated although he or she is in the midst of crowd (p. 521). Besides, Toru also feels as if he is not the part of the community because others are happy with their companions while he only observes the situation.
One day, Toru moves from the dormitory into a new cottage. Toru realizes he has not been in touch with Midori for nearly three weeks and he has not even told her about the move. Toru tries to call Midori but her sister tells that Midori is angry with him for disappearing without any news and Midori does not want to talk to him. When Midori finally agrees to see him, Toru is clearly distracted with Naoko’s worsen condition after reading a letter from Reiko. Midori hurts for being ignored by Toru and she hands a note for Toru, saying goodbye and asking him not to speak to her again. To Midori, Toru writes a letter telling that April and May are painful and lonely months for him because he cannot meet and talk to her (p. 342). After two months, they finally meet again and Toru admits that he feels lonely without Midori’s companion.
Toru feels that April is the loneliest month since Toru does not have any companion. Toru realizes that he does not only miss Naoko and Midori but Nagasawa and Storm Trooper as well. Naoko has left for sanatorium and Nagasawa looks forward to his civil service carrier. Moreover, Midori still refuses to meet and have conversation with Toru because she is still angry with him. Toru even misses Storm Trooper too, his long-lost roommate. In April, Toru feels terribly lonely and misses his friends while everyone looks happy with each other’s companion.
April was too lonely a month to spend all alone. In April, everyone around me looked happy. People would throw their coats off and enjoy each other’s company in the sunshine – talking, playing catch, holding hands. But I was always by myself. Naoko, Midori, Nagasawa: all of them had gone away from where I stood. Now I had no one to say “Good Morning” to or “Have a nice day.” I even missed Storm Trooper. I spent the whole Toru feels lonely when he spends the whole month alone because he does not have anyone as his companion. Russel, Peplau, and Cutrona (1980) state that a lonely person would have fewer friends and engage in fewer social activities (as cited in Baron and Byrne, 1987, p. 522). The previous statement from Russel explains that Toru’s loneliness is caused by his limited friendship. Toru’s friendship is limited since he only has Naoko, Midori, Nagasawa, and Storm Trooper as his friends. Thus, when those people are gone, Toru does not have companions and he feels the sense of loneliness as well.
Baron and Byrne (1987) also state that loneliness is a situation when a person feels friendless although he or she is in the midst of a crowd (p. 521).
Baron and Byrne’s statements describes Toru’s loneliness since he feels lonely although he is surrounded by people. Moreover, Toru is also friendless since his friendship is limited as well. Thus,
Toru’s friendless situation proves that Toru lacks of companion and it leads him into his sense of loneliness. In addition, Toru’s loneliness can be categorized as social loneliness. Weiss (1973) defines social loneliness as a subjective feeling caused by the lack of a sufficient number of friends. Toru’s friendship is limited to some people and he lacks of friends as well. In conclusion, Toru feels lonely because he lacks of friends.
2. Unable to Attain His Desired Relationship with Naoko
In the first chapter, a 37-year-old Toru Watanabe travels to Germany and an orchestral version of the Beatles song “Norwegian Wood” is played over the
1969 when he was a college student and in love with a girl called Naoko. Toru recalls the day when he takes a walk with Naoko and conveys his feeling for her.
“Tell me something, Toru,” she said. “Do you love me?” “You know I do,” I answered. “Will you do me two favors?” “You may have up to three wishes, madame.” Naoko smiled and shook her head. “No, two will be enough. One is for you to realize how grateful I am that you came to see me here. I hope you’ll understand how happy you’ve made me. I know it’s going to save me if any thing will. I may not show it, but it’s true.”
“I’ll come to see you again,” I said. “And what us the other wish?” “I want you always to remember me. Will you remember that I existed, and that I stood next to you like this?” “Always,” I said. “I’ll always remember.” (p. 11).
Toru remembers that he ever conveys his feeling toward Naoko as he recalls the day when he takes a walk with Naoko. Toru promises Naoko that he will always remember Naoko and it is one of the evidences that Toru loves Naoko. Besides, Toru is also willingly to do some favors for Naoko.
Afterwards, Toru recalls being a senior high school student. Toru meets Naoko, a beautiful yet emotionally fragile young woman who comes from the same town as Toru. Naoko has a relationship with her childhood sweetheart, Kizuki, who happens to be Toru’s best friend in senior high school. Since then, Toru and Naoko become friends. The three of them have been inseparable until Kizuki commits suicide which makes their friendship does not last for long. Since there is nothing to bond them, both Toru and Naoko go their separate ways.
Toru and Naoko have not met for a year and they coincidentally meet by a chance on a Chuo Line in Tokyo a year later a fter Kizuki’s death by carbon- monoxide poisoning, (p. 29). Both Toru and Naoko spend more time together and their shared pain over the loss of Kizuki. Yet, this pain makes Naoko unable to accept Kizuki’s death and suffer a mental breakdown which makes her stay at a sanatorium set deep in the mountains.
Since the leaving of Naoko, Toru feels the longing for Naoko and he writes a letter for her saying that every night he thinks about Naoko and he realizes how much he needs her (p. 76). Toru really loses her and his world seems meaningless after Naoko has left. Toru writes some letters to Naoko and visits her in the sanatorium once in a while. In his first visit, Toru takes a walk with Naoko and asks her to live with him if her condition is getting better.
“You’re wasting your life being involved with me.” “I’m not wasting anything.” “But I might never recover. Will you wait for me forever? Can you wait ten years, twenty years?” “You’re letting yourself be scared by too many things,” I said. “The dark, bad dreams, the power of the dead. You have to forget them. I’m sure you’ll get well if you do.” “If I can,” said Naoko, shaking her head.
“If you can get out of this place, will you live with me?” I asked. “Then I can protect you from the dark and from bad dreams. Then you’d have me instead of Reiko to hold you when things go difficult.” Naoko pressed still move firmly against me. “That would be wonderful,” she said. (p. 195)
Toru’s willingness to wait for Naoko and protect her from everything that makes Naoko afraid of proves that Toru loves Naoko. Toru even considers that waiting for Naoko and getting involved with her are not a waste of time even though Toru is not sure whether Naoko will recover or not. On the other hand, Naoko refuses it because of her sickness and she does not want to be a burden for anyone. Thereby, she asks Toru to go on living without her but Toru wants to stay and wait for her.
In another letter, Toru writes about his move from dormitory to a new cottage. In his letter, Toru suggests Naoko to start living together with him and he wants to be always near with Naoko (p. 319). Toru waits patiently for Naoko to accept him as a lover which shows that he really loves Naoko, despite of her unstable mental condition. Although Naoko has warned him to not waste time by waiting for her, Toru still wants to wait for her.
Toru shows his love for Naoko through his caring and willingness to wait for Naoko. On the other hand, Naoko is unable to love Toru and respond his feeling. Naoko finds it is impossible to love anyone else besides Kizuki. Naoko still loves Kizuki since long time ago until Kizuki has left her behind because of his suicide. Besides, Naoko also feels as if some of her parts have been lost after Kizuki’s death.
“I don’t mean to hurt you, but this much you have to understand: Kizuki and I had a truly special relationship. We had been together from the time we were three. It’s how we grew up: always together, always talking, understanding each other perfectly. The first time we kissed
- – it was in the sixth grade
- – was just wonderful. The first time I had my period, I ran to him and cried like a baby. We were that close. So after he died, I didn’t know how to re late to other people. I didn’t know what it means to love another person.” (p. 150)
Although Naoko and Toru finally grow closer after Kizuki’s suicide, Naoko actually does not know how to relate with other people and she never loves Toru; even Naoko withdraws herself from Toru.
Naoko’s confession about her relationship with Kizuki proves that Naoko is unable to love Toru back. Thus, Toru’s love for Naoko is one-side love or unrequited love.
Years later, Toru finally realizes that he has no future together and has a Naoko asks him never to forget her because Naoko knows that memories about her will fade from time to time. The next paragraph shows that Toru finally realizes that Naoko never loves him.
The more the memories of Naoko inside me fade, the more deeply I am able to understand her. I know, too, why she asked me not to forget her. Naoko herself knew, of course. She knew that my memories of her would fade. Which is precisely why she begged me never to forget her, to remember that she had existed. The thoughts fills me with an almost unbearable sorrow. Because Naoko never loved me. (pp. 12-13) According to Peplau and Perlman (1982), loneliness is a feeling which appears whenever a person is unable to attain his or her desired relationship (as cited in Baron, 1994, p. 521). It means that loneliness appears because there is a mismatch between the actual relationship and the desired relationship. Based on the analyses above, it can be concluded that Toru’s desire to have relationship with Naoko is unfulfilled. Toru has a feeling towards Naoko; he falls in love with her. However, Naoko is unable to love him back because she still loves Kizuki.
Besides, she does not know how to love anoth er person since Kizuki’s death. Thus, it can be concluded that that Toru’s loneliness appears because he is unable to attain his desired relationship.
3. Lack of Belongingness and Love Needs, Esteem Needs and Self-Actualization Needs
In this part, the writer will describe how unfulfilled needs influence Toru’s tendencies to be alone. Maslow’s theory of Human Need is applied to describe how
Toru’s unfulfilled needs influence the way Toru interacts with others that satisfied into five types, namely: physiological needs, safety needs, love and belonging needs, esteem needs, and self-actualization needs. However, in this study, the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe deal with three basic needs only, namely love and belongingness needs, esteem needs, and self- actualization needs.
a. Lack of Belongingness and Love Needs
Social needs can be defined as belongingness and love needs, which can be gained in the family or society. According to Maslow’s Theory of Human
Needs (1954), love and belongingness needs cover the desire for friendship, the wish for a mate, and the need to belong to a family (as cited in Feist, 2009, pp.
281-282). In his family, Toru is the one and only child who never once felt deprived or wished to have siblings since he has been satisfied of being alone. At the age of seventeen, he chose to move to Tokyo and lived in dormitory which makes him away from his parents. However, when Toru accompanies Hatsumi to go to a bar and shoot a pool, he wishes that he has an elder sister like Hatsumi.
“You know, when we were shooting pool before, something popped into my mind,” I said. “I was an only child but the whole time I was growing up I never once felt deprived or wished I had brothers or sisters. I was satisfied being alone. But all of sudden, shooting pool with you, I had this feeling like I wished I had had an elder sister like you
- – really chic and knockout in a midnight blue dress and golden earrings and great with a pool cute.” (p. 285)
Toru suddenly feels the desires to have siblings when he accompanies Hatsumi to go to a bar and shoot a pool. Although Toru has been satisfied of being alone, he feels lonely because he does not have sister or brother in his family. Thus, he never shares and feels love from siblings.
During senior high school time, Toru only has Kizuki and Naoko as his friends . Kizuki is the one and only best friend he has and Naoko is Kizuki’s girlfriend who Toru falls in love with. In dormitory, Toru has friends namely
Nagasawa and Storm Trooper. Toru also meets Midori, his classmate in drama class. However, Toru becomes a secretive person when it comes to his personal life. Toru’s painful memories from the past caused him to be someone who cannot open up about his problems.
As a college student, Toru is a loner who does not have any friends to talk to and he does not try to make friends as well. He always sits alone in the classroom and spends his lunch time by himself. Once, Toru feels detached and lonely from his surroundings because others are happy with their companion and he thinks he is not the part of the happiness (p. 107). Toru also considers that April is the loneliest month since he does not have any companion. He spends the whole month with his sense of isolation which makes him realize that he does not only miss Naoko and Midori but also Nagasawa and Storm Trooper as well (p. 337).
In senior high school, Toru has a girl he likes. However, his relationship with the girl seems like based on the sexual desire which does not give the sense of belonging for him. Besides, Toru also admits that he has never been in love.
“She was nice,” I said, “I enjoyed sleeping with her, and I miss her every now and then, but finall y, she didn’t move me. I don’t know, sometimes I
“Have you ever been in love?” Naoko asked. “Never,” I said. She didn’t ask me more than that. (p. 38)
In senior high school, Toru has a girlfriend and it means that he has ever been in a relationship. Unfortunately, his relationship is based on the sexual desire rather than love. Thus, it only gives him doubts whether Toru can really love someone or not.
Toru’s lack of love and belongingness needs can also be shown from his unfulfilled desire for a relationship. Toru falls in love with Naoko but unfortunately Naoko is unable to love him back because she still loves Kizuki although Kizuki has died. Besides, after Kizuki has died, Naoko does not know how to relate to other people and she does not know what it means to love another person as well (p. 150).
Thus, it proves that Toru’s love for Naoko is one-sided love or unrequited love because Naoko cannot reciprocate Toru’s love. Besides,
Toru’s desire for having a relationship with Naoko is unfulfilled and it makes him lack of love and belongingness needs.
If it is compared to Maslow’s explanation about love and belongingness needs, To ru’s love and belongingness needs is not satisfied because he does not have close friends and siblings. Moreover, his desire for having a relationship is unfulfilled. Having no close friends, siblings, and true lover proves that Toru has never felt the sense of love and belongingness. As a result, it causes him into loneliness.
b. Lack of Esteem Needs
The basis of Maslow’s theory of needs is that the needs on the lowest stage should be satisfied first before the higher needs can be fulfilled.
Based on Toru’s experiences , Toru’s esteem needs cannot be fulfilled because his love and belongingness needs are not satisfied. According to Maslow (1954), esteem needs cover self-respect and esteem from others (as cited in Feist, 2009, p. 283). When this need is met, people will be confident and valuable. Satisfaction of esteem needs lead to feeling of self-confidence, worth, and capability. Based on Maslow’s theory on esteem needs, Toru’s loneliness is led by the lack of esteem needs
- – especially self-esteem needs – because he lacks of confidence and he often feels unworthy.
Maslow (1954) states that self- esteem is a person’s own feeling of confidence and worth. Therefore, a person with high self-esteem will not feel unworthy and not confidence. Meanwhile, Jones, Freeman, and Goswick (1981) mention that people who are lonely express low self-esteem (as cited in Baron and Byrne, 1987, p. 522). Based on the findings of the first problem formulation, Toru is described as a self-doubted person who often thinks that he is unworthy. Toru also expresses his low self-esteem because he considers that he is unworthy of attention. When Toru is befriended by Kizuki, Toru considers that he is unworthy to be chosen as Kizuki’s best friend because Kizuki is a smart and capable talker (p. 30). He also thinks that he is unworthy to be a friend of a smart and charming guy like Nagasawa (p. 43). Toru feels as if he is not valuable because he is just an friend by Kizuki and Nagasawa. Thus, it emphasizes that Toru is unable to respect himself because he thinks he is not worth the attention from his friends.
Toru’s failure to fulfill esteem needs gives him a feeling of unconfident that makes him feel uncertain of being able to get along better with pretty girls.
Once when Hatsumi tries to find a girlfriend for Toru, Toru conveys that it is a waste of time because he is too poor to go out with super-rich girls from Hatsumi’s top girls’ college (p. 271). His lack of confidence makes him think that he is not capable to interact or get along with girls from top university.
Based on Maslow’s explanation about esteem needs, it can be concluded that Toru lacks of esteem needs since he is a person with low self-esteem who often believes that he is unworthy of attention and feels unconfident. In addition, based on Perlman and Peplau (1984) about factors that can cause loneliness, they state that low self- esteem and shyness are a person’s characteristic the predisposing factors of loneliness. Since Toru has low self-esteem, it causes him to feel the loneliness. Besides, he is also considered as a shy person because he is not confident. Thus, his low self-esteem and shyness is the causes of his loneliness.
The lack of self-esteem experienced by Toru makes him feel unworthy and also unable to respect himself. As a result, he becomes not confident and unable to interact well with others. Therefore, he lacks of companion because he is not confident that makes him unable to broaden his friendship with others and feel the sense of loneliness as well.
c. Lacks of Self-Actualization Needs
Maslow (1954) defines self- actualization as one’s capability to be everything he or she wants and is capable of it (as cited in Feist, 2009, pp. 283- 284). These needs are psychological needs that develop and exploit all of his or her capabilities, potentialities, and talents to be everything he or she wants.
Further, Maslow states that these needs include self-fulfillment and the realization of all one’s potential.
If it is compared to the Maslow’s explanation about self-actualization needs, it can be said that during his life, Toru has not actualized himself well. In
Norwegian Wood, Toru is described as a person who loves reading and he spends
most of his time by reading books. Since Toru is interested in spending his time by reading books, his friends in dormitory think that he wants to be a writer.
However, he says that there is nothing he wants to be (p. 39). In addition, Toru decides to major drama in college although he does not have any particular passion for the subject (p. 21). Toru is failed to fulfill his self-actualization needs because he even does not know his own potential and talent thus he is unable to exploit his capabilities and potentialities.
The need for self-actualization is the desire to become more and everything that one is capable of becoming. However, unlike other students in his age, Toru does not seem to become more because he does not have any goals or intentions of becoming successful. Toru has not realized about what he wants in the future and it shows that Toru does not have any ambition for the future. Thus,
Toru’s failure to fulfill the love and belongingness needs, the esteem needs, and the self-actualization needs influence the way he interacts with other people and sees his life. His unsatisfied needs also give him the tendencies to experience loneliness. Toru does not have a lot of friends and he considers himself as someone who is unworthy of his friends’ attention. Moreover, Toru is not confidence with himself and it makes him unable to make friends easily. In addition, Toru is unsure of what he wants to do with his life and unable to develop his capabilities as well because he does not have any ambition to be successful.
CHAPTER V CONCLUSIONS, IMPLICATIONS, AND SUGGESTIONS This chapter consists of three parts, namely conclusions, implications, and
suggestions. The first part presents the conclusions of this study based on the discussion of the problem formulation in chapter four. The second part presents implications of this study for education. Afterwards, the last part proposes suggestions for the further researchers to the content of Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood and for English teachers.
This study presents an analysis on the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe, the major character of Norwegian Wood. There are two research questions used in this study to help the writer to discover the causes of loneliness, namely
“How is Toru Watanabe’s character described in the novel?” and “What are the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe?“. After analyzing the problems formulations, there are two conclusions to be drawn in this chapter. The first conclusion is the character and characterization of Toru Watanabe and the second conclusion is the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe.
Based on the previous chapter, Toru Watanabe is portrayed as a loner since he prefers to be alone and spend most of his time by himself. He is the one school. After his best friend’s suicide, Toru is unable to open up his heart and he decides to distance himself from others as well. Toru is also portrayed as an ordinary guy that is shown from his appearance and reaction when the student strike happens. Besides, Toru is a caring person who cares about his friends namely Naoko, Storm Trooper, Hatsumi, Midori and even Midori’s father. However, Toru is also considered as a self-doubted person. Toru always thinks that he does not deserve of what he has and he feels not confident of himself as well. It leads him into pessimism and it makes him do not have specific goals for his future life.
The second analysis is about the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe. The first cause is Toru lacks of companionship. Toru’s lack of companionship is caused by his decision to distance himself from others and his difficulties to open up his heart after his best friend’s death. As a result, it leads him into the sense of loneliness since his friendship is limited to some people. Moreover, when his friends are gone, Toru does not have anyone else as his companion.
The second cause of Toru’s loneliness is that Toru is unable to attain his desired relationship with Naoko. Toru falls in love with Naoko and he wants to be in a relationship with her. Unfortunately, Naoko is unable to love him back and she finds it is impossible to love anyone else besides Kizuki. In conclussion, his loneliness is a feeling which appears whenever a person is unable to attain his desired relationship.
The third cause is Toru lacks of belongingness and love needs, self-esteem needs and self-actualization needs. The facts that Toru lacks of companionship, Toru has the desires to have an elder sibling and Toru has never been in love prove that Toru lacks of belongingness and love needs. Moreover, Toru also lacks of self-esteem needs. His character as an unconfident and self-doubted person shows that he lacks of self-esteem needs and it leads him into his loneliness. He often believes that he is unworthy of the friendship he has with Kizuki and Nagasawa. His lack of confidence also makes him think that he is not capable to interact or get along with person who has higher status. Furthermore, Toru is also failed to fulfill his self-actualization needs because he does not even know his own potential and talent. Thus, he is unable to exploit his capabilities and it makes him do not have goals for his future life.
The theme of this study is about loneliness, which is experienced by Toru Watanabe as the main character in Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood. In the novel, Toru is depicted as a loner person who prefers to spend most of his time by himself. He also does not form close friendship with those around him because of his best friend’s suicide. Besides, Toru is an unconfident and self-doubted person.
He always thinks that he does not deserve of what he has and he has low self- confidence as well. Moreover, Toru does not have specific goals for his future life and he turns to be a pessimistic person.
In the field of education, Toru can be seen as a representative of a student. Each student has different character, whether it is positive or negative. Some examples of negative characteristic are loner, self-doubt, and low self-confidence.
Besides, loneliness as the theme of the study can also be found at school and experienced by the students. Loneliness is a psychological problem which can be experienced in our daily life and it can happen among the students at school as well. Teachers’ roles are highly needed to overcome loneliness at school or classroom. Thus, a teacher is expected to master not only about the learning material but also the various characteristic of the students as well. There will be probabilities for teachers to have students with the same characteristic as Toru Watanabe who is loner, unconfident, and self-doubted.
Loneliness in the classroom which is experienced by the students can be a big problem and it will affect student s’ learning process. According to Perlman and Peplau (1984), factors that can cause loneliness are moving to a new school or neighborhood, losing of an important person through death or breaking up, and experiencing the divorce of parents. Students also will experience loneliness when they have less social contact than they have expected before. They might also feel lonely because of being ignored or rejected by their friends in school or college.
Moreover, Perlman and Peplau (1984) also state that shyness, low self-esteem, introversion and lack of social skill are the characteristics which associated with loneliness. Those characteristics lead to loneliness because it makes a person incapable of making and keeping friends.
Students who are lonely usually express low self-esteem and often believe that they are unworthy of the attention. Those who are having low self-esteem usually will focus on their weaknesses rather than their positive qualities and they are likely to be self-doubting. They are also unable to respect themselves and it makes them believe that they are not valuable. As a result, students will have low self- confidence as well which can affect the students’ way of having interaction with others. Besides, students with low self-confidence are incapable of interacting well and making friends. Therefore, they will have fewer friends, distance themselves from others, and reluctant to take part in group activities.
Students who are not confident will be reluctant to be active in the classroom besides having difficulties in making and keeping friends. Their academic performance will also be unsatisfying because low self-confidence can lessen students’ motivation to learn and willingness to take a risk. Thus, they might be afraid of making mistakes during the learning process and they will not make progress in their study.
Lonely students and unconfident students need teachers’ help and guidance. Teachers can ask them to tell about their problems in order to know the reasons or causes why they tend to be lonely. Listening to students’ problem and giving advices will ease the pain of loneliness. If the children lack of confidence and social skills, teacher can make them to be involved more in peer activities in order to gain their confidence and social skill. Besides, teacher can also use some creative activities such as drawing, writing, crafting, or others to help students in expressing their feeling of sadness or loneliness. Students will ease the pain of loneliness as well by expressing their unhappy feeling.
Understanding about loneliness at school is important for teachers since it gives some benefits. Teachers will get information about the causes of loneliness and the effects which later on can affect students’ academic performance. Besides showing unsatisfying academic performance, lonely students will also have incapability to make friends and socialize well. By understanding about loneliness and the characteristics which associated with loneliness, teachers are expected to be able to cope with it in order to create good academic performance and good social skills among the students.
In the context of English Language Education Study Program, students of ELESP need to study about students characteristic and how to give the suitable guidance for students through psychological courses. The psychological courses help the student to learn and explore about psychological condition, such as behavior, thought, personality, and motivation. As teacher candidates, the students of ELESP are expected to take psychological courses offered, for instance:
Psikologi Remaja , Psikologi Belajar dan Pembelajaran, and Dasar-Dasar
Bimbingan dan Konseling . Those psychological courses offer knowledge about
adolescence as transition period where changes happen among adolescent, teaching and learning concept, factors which affects teaching and learning process, effects of the various characteristic of students towards learning process and the achievement in learning, and the concept of guidance and counseling at teacher candidates to solve problems which might happen in the classroom by giving the suitable guidance. Besides, as teacher candidates, ELESP students are expected to have awareness about the problems which might happen among the students and other issues in education field.
The suggestions are divided into two parts. The first part is the suggestions intended for future researchers. Meanwhile, the second part of this section is intended for lecturers who use literary works in the learning process.
1. For Future Researchers
In this study, the writer only explores the characteristics of Toru Watanabe as the main character and discusses the causes of loneliness as experienced by Toru Watanabe. However, this study is not yet perfect and it still needs improvements. For future researchers, there are some topics related to this novel which can be discussed. The first topic is about the causes of loneliness as experienced by Naoko. Since in Norwegian Wood there are some notable characters who commit suicide namely Naoko, Hatsumi, and Kizuki, the future researchers can discuss about the meanings of death as seen by Toru Watanabe.
Moreover, there are two important characters in Norwegian Wood which can be explored as well, such as Naoko and Midori Kobayashi. In addition, future researchers can explore about Naoko and her schizophrenia which appears after
2. For English Lecturers
Literature has an important role in the language teaching and learning process because it helps students to learn English and improve their English proficiency by reading literary work, for instance: novel. Moreover, novel can be used as an interesting source of learning materials since the students are able to comprehend the topic or theme of the novel and enhance their vocabulary as well. Therefore, the writer recommends English lecturers to use this novel as one of references in a Prose class. Prose class is chosen because this course focuses on developing students’ ability to read and analyze literary works. Besides, students who take this course have already had adequate vocabulary and capability to read a novel. Teacher can select some parts of the novel or present the summary of the novel and make some questions about the theme or provides some topics to be discussed.