Klara and the Sun

by

Kazuo Ishiguro

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Themes and Colors
The Meaning of Love Theme Icon
Costs and Benefits of Progress Theme Icon
Faith and Hope Theme Icon
Environmentalism Theme Icon
LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in Klara and the Sun, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work.

The Meaning of Love

Kazuo Ishiguro’s Klara and the Sun is a story that looks at love from a variety of different perspectives. Perhaps the most difficult question about love that the novel poses is about whether or not love itself is a strictly human experience. The “portrait” of Josie that Mr. Capaldi makes particularly emphasizes this question. The “portrait” is actually a robotic replica of Josie, and the Mother’s plan if Josie dies is for Klara—a robot—to…

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Costs and Benefits of Progress

Kazuo Ishiguro’s Klara and the Sun is a science fiction novel that imagines how humanity might progress (or regress) in the near future. One of the most important futuristic concepts in the novel is a process called “lifting.” Although the precise mechanics of lifting are intentionally left vague, it seems to refer to a procedure that parents choose to have done on their children at a young age for the purpose of increasing their intelligence…

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Faith and Hope

One of the unusual aspects of Kazuo Ishiguro’s Klara and the Sun is that the most spiritual character is a robot. Although human characters occasionally say things like “Oh my God,” there’s nothing to suggest that any of them are particularly religious. By contrast, while Klara also has no traditional concepts of any god or religion, she treats the Sun as if it’s a personal god with the power to intervene in her life as…

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Environmentalism

One of the central paradoxes of Klara and the Sun is that, while Klara is a robot created by humans out of artificial materials, she gets nourishment from nature: in particular, the Sun. Even though Klara is a product of industrialized human society, then, she appreciates nature more than many of the humans around her. One of the recurring images in the book is the Cootings Machine (which seems to be some sort of…

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