1st Edition

A World History of Chinese Literature

Edited By Yingjin Zhang Copyright 2023
    422 Pages 42 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Providing a broad introduction to the area, A World History of Chinese Literature maps the field of Chinese literature across its various worlds, looking both within – at the world of Chinese literature, its history, linguistic, cultural, local, and regional specificities – and without – at the way Chinese literature has circulated throughout the world. The thematic focus allows for a broad number of key categories, such as authors, genres, genders, regions, as well as innovative explorations of new topics and issues such as inter-arts performativity and transmediation.

    The sections cover the circulation and reception of China in world literature, as well as the worlds of:

    • Chinese literature across the globe
    • Borders, oceans, and rainforests
    • Comparative literary genres
    • Translingual writers and scholars
    • Gender configurations
    • Translation and transmediation

    With a focus on the twentieth and twenty-first century, this collection intervenes in current debates on global Chinese literature, Sinophone and Sinoscript studies, and the production and reception of literary works by ethnic Chinese in non-Sinitic languages, as well as Anglophone literature inspired by Chinese literary tradition. It will be of interest to anyone working on or studying Chinese literature, language and culture, as well as world literatures in relation to China.

    List of Figures

    List of Contributors

    I. Overviews: Literature, History, and the Multiple Worlds

    1. General Introduction

    Yingjin Zhang

    (University of California, San Diego)

    2. Modern Chinese Literary Historiography

    David Wang

    (Harvard University)


    II. Circulation and Reception of China in World Literature

    3. Zeitgeist and Literature: The Reception of Chinese Literature in Germany until the First Half of the Twentieth Century

    Weigui Fang

    (Beijing Normal University, China)

    4. Paris and the Art of Transposition, 1920s-1940s

    Angie Chau

    (University of Victoria, Canada)

    5. Line, Loop, Constellation: Classical Chinese Poetry between Sinophone and Anglophone Worlds


    Hui (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand)

    6. A Decade Apart: Bridging the US and China Literary Systems, 2010-2021

    Jonathan Stalling

    (University of Oklahoma)

    III. Worlding Chinese Literature Across the Globe

    7. Chinese Literature at Large: Wong Chin Foo’s Border-Crossing Writing

    Ping Zhu

    (University of Oklahoma)

    8. Engaging the World in Republican Literature

    Liyan Qin

    (Peking University, China)

    9. The Rise of Author Museums in the PRC: How Institutions Make World Literature

    Emily Graf

    (Free University of Berlin, Germany)

    IV. Sinophone Worlds of Borderlands, Urban Jungles, and Rainforests

    10. Yi Literature: Traditional and Contemporary

    Mark Bender

    (Ohio State University)

    11. Queer Sinophone Literature in Hong Kong: The Politics of Worldliness

    Alvin K. Wong

    (University of Hong Kong)

    12. Taiwanese Literature in the Early Twenty-First Century

    Kuei-fen Chiu

    (Chung Hsing University, Taiwan)

    13. Of Other (Chinese) Spaces: Sinophone Literature and the Rainforest

    Andrea Bachner

    (Cornell University)

    V. Comparative Worlds of Literary Genres

    14. Modern Chinese Drama Across Media and Worlds: Centered on the Case of the White Snake

    Liang Luo

    (University of Kentucky)

    15. Reportage and the Forms of Nonfiction Art in China

    Charles Laughlin

    (University of Virginia)

    16. Reading World Literature in Chinese Science Fiction

    Lena Henningsen

    (University of Freiburg, Germany)

    17. Ecological Critique as World Literature: Alienation of Nature and Humans in Chen Qiufan’s Waste Tide

    Ban Wang

    (Stanford University)

    VI. Translingual Worlds of Writers and Scholars

    18. Su Manshu’s "Broken Hairpin": A Romantic Tragedy in the Hard Times

    Ping-hui Liao

    (University of California, San Diego)

    19. Qian Zhongshu as a Cosmopolitan


    Jin (Suzhou University, China)

    20. Zhang Ailing and the Cold War Cultural Geography

    Xiaojue Wang

    (Rutgers University)

    21. Worlding Jin Yong’s Martial Arts (Wuxia) Narrative in Three Keys: Narration, Translation, Adaptation

    Weijie Song

    (Rutgers University)

    22. Yan Lianke’s Heterotopic Imaginaries

    Carlos Rojas

    (Duke University)

    VII. New Worlds of Gender Configurations

    23. Modern Intellectual Masculinities in Transformation

    Jun Lei

    (Texas A&M University)

    24. Nora in China

    Hu Ying 

    (University of California, Irvine)

    25. Reading Women: Rethinking a Trope in the Socialist Modern and Beyond

    Barbara Mittler

    (University of Heidelberg, Germany)

    26. Feminine Neorealist Fiction in the New Millennium: Voice, Trauma, and Focalization in Fang Fang’s Fiction

    Li Guo

    (Utah State University)


    VIII. Changing Worlds of Translation and Transmediation

    27. Frame Tales: Reading the 1,001 Nights in Early Twentieth-Century China

    Michael Gibbs Hill

    (College of William and Mary)

    28. Figuring Time: Lyricism in Contemporary Chinese Poetic Films

    Shengqing Wu

    (Hong Kong University of Science and Technology)

    29. Performance and Performativity in Modern China

    Emily Wilcox

    (College of William and Mary)

    30. Chinese Internet Fictions in the Transmedia World

    Yiwen Wang

    (University of California, San Diego)




    Yingjin Zhang was Distinguished Professor of Modern Chinese Literature at the University of California, San Diego, as well as Visiting Professor of Humanities at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China. His publications include The Making of Chinese-Sinophone Literatures as World Literature (2022), New Chinese-Language Documentaries (Routledge, 2017), and Chinese Film Stars (Routledge, 2010).