Synopses & Reviews
Guggenheim fellow and Edgar Award–winning author Huang (Charlie Chan) edits and does much of the translation in this superb and suitably massive compendium of Chinese literature that stretches from the downfall of the Qing dynasty in 1912 to the present. In his introduction Huang calls this a "search for the soul of modern China." That search takes readers from the sometimes giddy works of the republican era through the constrained literature of Maoist times to the broad range of styles in the post Mao period. Among the many novel excerpts are selections from Nobel laureate Mo Yan's Red Sorghum full of vibrant colors odors sounds and action and from Nobel laureate Gao Xingjian's thoughtful Soul Mountain. Shorter works appear in abundance as well with pieces from Lu Xun opening the collection including "A Madman's Diary" his disturbing allegorical critique of traditional Chinese society. Poetry abounds ranging from the very brief "mini poems" of Bing Xin to Yang Lian's longer magical verselike poem Norlang about a male Tibetan deity. While the republican and post Mao eras receive the lion's share of this collection's pages the revolutionary era is well represented by poetry from Mao Zedong himself and selections from the opera The Red Lantern. Huang does not neglect nonfiction works: the book includes Lin Juemin's "Last Letter to His Wife" and even Zhou Zuoren's "Reading in the Lavatory." A treasure trove for any reader interested in Chinese literature. (Feb.) " Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
This anthology of Chinese literature gathers entire pieces andexcerpts by about 50 Chinese writers during the period from 1911 to the present, revealing how the Chinese soul endured through thepolitical and economic hardships of the 20th century. Pieces selected include essays, speeches, and letters, as well as poetry andfiction, including both pulp fiction and literary fiction. Writers represented include Gao Xingjian, Mao Zedong, Bei Dao, and Cui Jian.Each selection begins with brief notes on the author. Readings are grouped according to three eras: the Republican era 1911-49, theRevolutionary era 1949-76, and the post-Mao era 1976-present. Each section begins with brief chronology of the period and contains ashort intro to the era, giving political, social, and literary context. The book’s introduction gives a brief, readable overview of Chinese history and the place of literature in it.Annotation ©2016 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com)
Award-winning literary scholar and poet Yunte Huang here gathers together an intimate and authoritative selection of significant works, in outstanding translations, from nearly fifty Chinese writers, that together express a search for the soul of modern China. From the 1912 overthrow of a millennia-long monarchy to the Cultural Revolution, to China s rise as a global military and economic superpower, the Chinese literary imagination has encompassed an astonishing array of moods and styles from sublime lyricism to witty surrealism, poignant documentary to the ironic, the transgressive, and the defiant.
Huang provides the requisite context for these revelatory works of fiction, poetry, essays, letters, and speeches in helpful headnotes, chronologies, and brief introductions to the Republican, Revolutionary, and Post-Mao Eras. From Lu Xun s Call to Arms (1923) to Gao Xinjiang s Nobel Prize winning Soul Mountain (1990), this remarkable anthology features writers both known and unknown in its celebration of the versatility of writing. From belles lettres to literary propaganda, from poetic revolution to pulp fiction, The Big Red Book of Modern Chinese Literature is an eye-opening, mesmerizing, and indispensable portrait of China in the tumultuous twentieth century.