"There's a new Puccini opera," she said. "An American betrays a Japanese woman. Butterfly. He ought to die of shame, but does not - Butterfly does. What are we to make of this? Is it that Japanese do die of shame and dishonour but American don't? Maybe can't ever die of shame because they lack the cultural equipment? As if, somehow, your country is just mechanically destined to move forward regardless of who is in the way or underfoot?
Thomas Pynchon, Against The Day (2006)