A Companion to Modern Chinese Literature

A Companion to Modern Chinese Literature

Language: English

Pages: 592

ISBN: 1118451627

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


This wide-ranging "Companion" provides a vital overview of modern Chinese literature in different geopolitical areas, from the 1840s to now. It reviews major accomplishments of Chinese literary scholarship published in Chinese and English and brings attention to previously neglected, important areas. Offers the most thorough and concise coverage of modern Chinese literature to date, drawing attention to previously neglected areas such as late Qing, Sinophone, and ethnic minority literature Several chapters explore literature in relation to Sinophone geopolitics, regional culture, urban culture, visual culture, print media, and new media The introduction and two chapters furnish overviews of the institutional development of modern Chinese literature in Chinese and English scholarship since the mid-twentieth century Contributions from leading literary scholars in mainland China and Hong Kong add their voices to international scholarship.

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outlook. Liang Bingjun (Leung Ping‐kwan) emerged on the scene and went on to become arguably the greatest poet in Hong Kong, as well as a major fiction writer, scholar, and culture critic. Before his untimely death in 2013, he was in effect the most eloquent spokesperson for Hong Kong on the international literary scene. As a movement born in Europe and America in the early twentieth century, with roots going back at least to the first half of the nineteenth century, modernism was a reaction to

major genres of late Qing literature—prose, poetry, and fiction. In Chapter 4, “War, Revolution, and Urban Transformations: Chinese Literature of the Republican Era, 1920s–1940s,” Nicole Huang (Huang Xincun) uses three inter­ twined themes as a window into the myriad of voices and styles of literature from Republican China. The literary landscape of the period was both closely integrated and sharply divided, as various literary schools and societies negotiated through various discourses and

text then intervenes. By the second decade of the twentieth century, the May Fourth generation, which grew up on the works of pioneer translators such as Liang Qichao, Yan Fu, and Lin Shu, began to dominate the debate on the choice of literary medium. By that point, the debate was re‐framed in terms of wenyan (classical language) and baihua (plain colloquial language). For their iconoclastic attack on all things traditional, including the classical language, Lin Shu served as the most convenient

actual product turned out far more diverse and less instrumental than the reformers would have hoped. Even Liang Qichao, after trying his hand at writing political fiction himself, recognized that turning social theories into entertaining reading was not easy. The majority of fiction produced at the time is not strictly speaking political fiction but rather in the subgenres of social exposé, detective stories, science fiction, and courtesan tales. Underneath the pervasive hope for a new age, an

that radical revolutionary writing is linked to literary tradition and can be recognized as literature. On the one hand, while keeping their references to reality, words lead to rhetorical devices and connotations in literature. On the other hand, personal memory is the basis for the creative nature of literary works. In Genealogy of the Red Flag, a complete revolutionary history is established on the basis of incomplete personal memory. When Liang Bin talked about the novel, he often repeated

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