There are different reasons for confidence to take a leading place on the way to success. Seiko Tenabe, an outstanding Japanese novelist and fiction author, and Pham Thi Hoai, a famous Vietnam novelist, are the masters of Asian literature.
The main topics of their works are love, belief, obstacles and personal preferences on the way of achieving goals. It is very important to be confident and to know what you want in life in order to succeed and to make the goals come to pass. Confidence and self-esteem are the main qualities to move forward in life.
According to the novel The Innocent by Seiko Tenabe, the main character is Sachiko. She is a young beautiful girl who wants to get married but can not find that special someone. Having a man she likes, she still thinks of having someone better and can not really understand what she wants.
She is small by complexion, has a nice figure and a lovely face that gives her a special seductive charm. On the other side, there is one of the main characters of the novel Nine Down Makes Ten written by Pham Thi Hoai, the Ninth Man, a person who knows what he wants.
He is strict and pragmatic in everything he does. It makes him having a good stable position in life. Comparing Sachiko and the Ninth Man, it is possible to say that Sachiko fails to keep pace with him in the aspect of being confident in life. She is used to wear different masks suitable for different situations. Actually, it is the best way out sometimes.
Both novelists have tried to do their best to show that being confidante is a winning position that will definitely lead to success and the truthfulness of this statement is proved by portraying the characters in a special way. Seiko Tenabe wanted to disclose a topic of a woman’s role in society and to show all possible ways of how a woman may get what she wants standing on her rights.
Sachiko is a portrait of a person who is used to adapt to different situations that demand some peculiar way of behavior. Nevertheless, it is also very important to be oneself and do not fall below the present level but rise.
Sachiko took the wrong way in life. “She found her behavior mean and disgusting” going out with am man she did not like at all to be one level higher from the social point of view (Tenabe 7). The Ninth Man is a contradiction to Sachiko. He easily overcomes all obstacles on his way and does everything possible to achieve what he needs. Pham Thi Hoai portrays the Ninth Man as a resistant person who always knows what he wants and that is what keeps him moving on being confident in whatever he does (35).
Sachiko takes life the way it is. She is in love with a man but he does not really fit her life principles and prejudices. It goes without saying that nowadays it is difficult to meet a true love but Sachiko still wants to be totally loved and wants everything to be in her way knowing this fact. The only advantage out of all this is that there is no need to worry about something if one does not want to change life.
However, there is also a big disadvantage that Sachiko gets what she wants but not the way she wants. She thinks that it would be nice for Kitazone, a man she wants to get married to, to be like one of her acquaintances Konno, a man of a strong will: “If he was a man like Konno…” she sais (Tenabe 12). Sachiko gets very disappointed and sad when Kitazone says that she makes up “a good drinking buddy” (Tenabe 13).
She is confused as she starts realizing that her charm and beauty leave her gradually and she becomes not attractive any more. She is used to the easygoing life and has never been confused because of a man before, that is why this situation is somehow strange for her as she does not even know the possible way out of the situation. The truth is that Sachiko is very passive and indifferent to changes, that’s why taking the situation for granted makes her accept what she is not happy about.
The Ninth Man impresses by a great variety of jobs that he regularly changes and still stays unsatisfied with the results. He is in search of the best and does not want to stop at what he has already achieved. It stands to reason that weak people, who do not have a strong will and desire to make changes, can not simply succeed and achieve something meaningful and worthy in life.
They say no pains, no gains. Nothing good comes easy and it is a universal truth. Sachiko is presented to portray a female part of the world that gives a good opportunity to realize that women have the same rights as well as men have and that confidence is not a crime but a big advantage.
Her internal representation of herself is compared with the appearance of other people. The self-esteem and the level of confidence can never be changed when comparing to other people. It is important to realize that for the things to change, the attitude to the situation should be changed firstly.
They say that emotional state of a person depends on attitude to life and the way these or that things and circumstances are taken. The Ninth Man does not mind anything as he knows what he wants.
He is always busy searching for the best in life and gets it even though a lot of efforts should be applied for this. Pham Thi Hoai presents the Ninth Man as a person of the “practical advantage” (36). He is not sentimental and has a sound mind realizing that it is necessary to be ready to solve any problem he may be chanced to face.
On the contrary, Sachiko is in the lack of one principle in life: she thinks she is not attractive for men any longer, that is why life seems so hard and the circumstances so complicated for her. Having faith, facing the problems and overcoming the obstacles are one of the most meaningful things to be successful and get desirable results. It is important to love yourself and the attitude of surrounding people will be changed to a better direction.
Sachiko does not apply any efforts to get what she wants and accepts what she is offered. The difference between Sachiko and the Ninth Man is the position in life from the spiritual point of view. Life has no meaning except the one people give to it as lifestyle and the quality of life depends straight upon people. At this point, people should consider carefully the meaning of life and the situations that may unsettle them.
Sachiko is about to get married at the end of the story; her plans come to pass not by means of searching but accepting the situation. Pham Thi Hoai shows the way how the Ninth Man is left out of spiritual satisfaction being too practical despite the fact he tries to do things in a reasonable way (36). It is better to be complete emotionally than to succeed from the material point of view.
In conclusion, it is possible to say that Sachiko is a bright example of how the things may go in life in case one does not have self-esteem and does not know what he/she wants.
It is proved that all the failures in life happen because of a feeling of inferiority that is brightly portrayed by the main character of The Innocent novel Sachiko who doubts about her appearance and possibilities (13). However, it is impossible to say the same about the Ninth Man who always knows the determined right ways of solving the issues. The most important things are to set a goal, believe in yourself and ignore the obstacles that people happen to meet in a daily life.
One must never be afraid of airing one’s own opinion and stand for the life principles. Both characters serve as a bright example of the major part of the world. The main point of the whole issue is to be confident, positive and assured in getting the best results and high achievements as it all depends upon each individual and personal needs and life desires of people. To be more precise, confidence is the key to success but not everyone knows the right lock to use this key.
Pham, Thi Hoai. “Nine Down Makes Ten” Another Kind of Paradise: Short Stories from the New Asia-Pacific. Ed. Carolan Trevor. USA: Boston, 2009. Print. 27-37.
Tenabe, Seiko. “The Innocent”. Another Kind of Paradise: Short Stories from the New Asia-Pacific. Ed. Carolan Trevor. USA: Boston, 2009. Print. 1-17.