In the last section of The Gold Coast discussed, Jim is starting to actualize his potentials. A major theme of Kim Stanley Robinson’s novel is circularity. Not the perfections of a circle, but the looping of a circle. This loop is a representation of exteriority. The outside world of Orange County controls Jim by drawing his conclusions for him; providing his train of thought. Jim and friends set out to pass the time in Europe and normally traveling brings about some type of awakening, but this was not the case at first. Everywhere Jim had gone, he was experiencing everything with familiarity. An example is when they go to Moscow to see behind the iron curtain, yet they end up looking for any type of american culture (226). The world has become americanized. This means the world is propped up by capitalization and consumerism, which have created the contemporary iron curtain. Jim is searching and he finds what he is looking for when he gets lost. I don’t find this to be ironic. Jim takes a peek behind this glamorized curtain and sees what is real. Poverty and misfortune have been swept behind. Jim has this realization of what Hana was teaching to; “you’ve got to throw your mind into your eyes and see. Always be watching” (188). Jim’s travel experience in Cairo acted as a prompt for the next location of Crete. He wants to get lost again, straying away from tourism which leads him to empty ruins in Itanos. Jim’s dreams are manifesting into his reality. His keenness of history acts as a bridge to his self. Finally, starting to walk across this bridge leads him to genuineness and authenticity. This is revealed during his heartfelt experiences with Hana. Jim has been derailed from the loop.
Robinson, Kim Stanley. The Golden Coast. Tom Doherty Associates Inc, 1988. Print.
Murray, Sarah. Itanos. Digital image. Wikipedia. N.p., 12 Dec. 2009. Web. 28 Oct. 2016. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Itanos_(city)#/media/File:Itanos1.jpg>.