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Acclaim for Ishiguro's work as a world literature writer center on his post-Japan novels, which begin with The Remains of the Day, are largely set in Europe, and feature white protagonists. His earlier, geographically specific Japan novels are ignored. This essay argues that this stems from Western critics' inability to read Japan. In examining Ishiguro's first novel, A Pale View of Hills, I demonstrate its complex engagement with ethical paradigms. I refute the claim that Ishiguro's novels should be cherished for promoting cosmopolitanism, insisting instead on historically engaged approaches.