Twilight of a Crane Analysis


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Using people you love, Loving objects you use.

Character or ElementThe ObviousThe Details

Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu su Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu Tsu
She is a crane who has the power to become a human. A Shape-shifter. She can be taken as a personification of nature, or an extension of nature. She is the ideal human being – she is pure and untouched by the evil desires of human beings. This makes sense because she is not human. Tsu can be seen as either nature, or a person whose fiance falls in love with money – and she has to experience his alienation and the increasingly lack of attention, rising violence, aggression and manipulation and the disappearance of affection and love. As nature, she gives herself to the person who actually cared for her, and made sure that person is happy. She provided for her – but Yohyo, in this interpretation representing humans, turned around and betrayed her by beginning to use her instead of loving her. Rather than understanding the fact that she is more valuable than anything, and the fact that he is living with her rather than using her for money, he is possessed by the love of money that he ends up exploiting her. Is this not how we exploit nature also?

Tsu prepares supped and food for Yohyo and wants nothing else but his love – she says she does not want anything else other than the simple life where they have happiness. She loves him, and never tries to use him. She offers him Senba Ori as a gift, to make him happy.

Even thought Yohyoa at first sees the Senba Ori for its beauty and aesthetic, later he changes and only sees the profit in it. Tsu and her production (like nature and its resources and beauty) is perceived by Yohyo as profit to be made, resources to be exploited. Tsu’s value drops to an object in the eyes of Yohyo. Tsu becomes merely human capital, like we learn in economics – human beings as part of the capital in a business.

This is how Tsu gets dehumanized in the play. The playwright shows us how humans are seen merely as a part of the machine that is a business, and how they are seen as indispensable as iron parts. Their humanity is removed from them (their value as human beings – dehumanized).

Just like businesses in the system of capitalism does not really take care of their employees and continue to exploit them, Tsu is also not taken care of by Yohyo anymore. She is exploited even at the risk of her death. Did you see how many people were forced to go to work even when the covid situation is dangerous? Even when some of them were supposed to quarantine? Most of the time, they prioritize their businesses and profit.

Tsu was not prioritized by Yohyo when he became a proponent of capitalism.
Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo Yohyo He is not very bright as we get to know in the story – both Sodo and Unzu easily trick him and he falls for it. But he takes care of Tsu and he is the one who saved her (when she was a crane in trouble). He is enticed by Sodo and becomes obsessed with money and blackmails, then forces Tsu to put herself at risk, just to make profit (which he really does not need because he has everything they need! Love, Food, Shelter, Happiness, Fulfillment, Family, Good Neighbours (Children come to play). Yet, the tug of (pull of) the greed for money is so strong that he transforms into someone who uses Tsu instead of loving her.The play starts off with Yohyo being so lovingly concerned about Tsu that we are touched by their relationship (Which seems ideal). He loves Tsu and remembers to warm up the soup for her saying that cold soup is no good – even though we know he is a bit of a scatterbrain, this gesture to remember to even heat it up is a reminder that Tsu and her well-being is the priority in his life. Everything else comes after this detail. He calls him dear and sweet heart, and this shows the intimacy that they shared. He is kind enough to entertain the children, who are comfortable with him.

This is the kind of person he was before Unzu and Sodo emerge in the picture. The entice him and deceive him with promises of money and other attractive things in the city. He becomes obsessed – when this obsession takes over, it begins to spread like a virus, and he transforms into someone else. Tsu uses the word ‘gradually’. This reminds the audience to rethink about themselves – am I also gradually being sucked into this blackhole, am I also changing because of my love for money? He moves on to the other side according to Tsu, where she can never be. Yohyo becomes more focused on profit rather than people – even the person he loves. HE becomes consumed by his avarice – even when he has a whole sack full of the gold, he want more and more of it. Tsu, complies to make him happy, but knows that he has gone beyond saving. He had become one of them – capitalist who exploits people. This is a warning to all people that even the kind-hearted men who used to love their wives can turn into avaricious people who mix up their priorities.

Yohyo loves the objects he should use, and he uses the people he should love.
Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo Sodo The more aggressive of the CAPITALISM duo (Unzu is the other one). He finds out about the valuable cloth made by Tsu and learns that she can make more – and he is the one who plans the deception of Yohyo and plants seeds of greed, enticing Yohyo into becoming money-minded, avaricious to the extent that Yohyo loses himself.
Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu Unzu He has been deceiving Yohyo even before the play begins – he has been taking the cloth and selling it in the town, but does not reveal the total of the profits to Yohyo but he has no clue. Unzu is also manipulated by Sodo.
Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children Children They play with Tsu and has a great relationship with her. They also play with Yohyo and are comfortable with both of them – they enter in the middle of the play and the end of the play which are pivotal moments. Children are very sensitive to safety – when they do not have confidence in someone, they will not associate with them. The fact that they are very confrotable around the two characters show us that they were happy, peacefula nd that the villagers also trusted htme enought to send thei children to play with them. It also shows how carefree and content their life was – there were no unwanted, unnecessary complications.
Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto Kyoto The picture below is from the 1950’s Kyoto – it shows the influence of America in Japan because the Americans were occupying Japan (after the world war 2) and the Japanese culture was very much affected by westernization. Kyoto was growing as a capitalist city with the American laws and strategies and Kinoshita talks about how going to Kyoto is a big deal.In the play the city becomes a symbol for capitalism and consumerism. A number of times Yohyo says he wants to buy stuff and see things in Kyoto – he is not even sure what he wants – this is because the lure of capitalism is not really about what you buy, but the thrill of having the power to buy stuff and just the thought and act of buying new stuff. This is a bit similar to people who are addicted to shopping – you don’t have the need but you are in love with the thrill it gives you to go around checking out different products and to buy them and own it. (Some of you may do the same thing with books – I have). So, Kyoto symbolizes capitalism and consumerism (the concept of buying stuff excessively). The thing about it is that the desire to buy stuff is born out not of a necessity but an elevated longing. Advertising is a good example. They try to make you buy stuff even when you do not want it. Even when it is not healthy for you (Like McDonalds or Cocca Colca). Do they have the consumer’s best interests? No. They ONLY focus on their profits. This is the same thing that happens to Tsu – Yohyo eventually selects Kyoto over Tsu’s well-being. He is more excited and interested in experiencing Kyoto than his loving wife.

Why can’t she travel together with him? She cannot survive in a city – she almost got killed once. And because nature and capitalism are not compatible – because capitalism is based on exploiting nature to get the maximum profits – and Tsu is exploited by Yohyo who has transformed into a proponent of capitalism, to get maximum profit out of her. Through the play the dramatist seems to tell us – as long as we keep producing and consuming excessively (above and beyond what we actually need), we will end up destroying nature. And, capitalism seems to want nothing but profit, so it will always encourage excessive buying!
https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2014/03/japan-in-the-1950s/100697/ – Kyoto in 1950

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