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    A Chinese Writer's Vicissitude in the Political and cultural Context of Early Modern China


    Peng, Lijing (2014) A Chinese Writer's Vicissitude in the Political and cultural Context of Early Modern China. PhD thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.

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    Abstract

    This dissertation explores the social and linguistic contexts of Shen Congwen's literary works, with a particular focus on (1) the way his works enriched and stratified nationalist ideology/narratives and (2) the linguistic ideologies, the historical images and the literary images registered as semiotic processes which mediated the Hmong identity formation and differentiation in Xiangxi, China. A range of scholars have demonstrated that the modern novel is one of the main tools for propagating the practices and ideologies of standardized language under nationalism. In this dissertation I examine the nature of the nationalist ideologies embodied in the still very young Modern Mandarin literature. Accordingly I have chosen texts in which collisions of different aesthetic and poetic traditions in Chinese history can be readily observed. Through a detailed analysis of literary devices including the juxtaposition of time-space configurations, the interactions of diversified linguistic elements and the micro-histories involved in the narratives, I demonstrate that Shen Congwen’s literary creations and literary language can be considered as valuable early attestations of the potential for creativity in modern Chinese realistic literature. In this research I also look into the dialogic relationships between standard and vernacular languages, and between classical and modern languages in current Xiangxi and in Shen Congwen’s literary works respectively. This study is one of the first sophisticated attempts to bring a Chinese regional language complex to the field of linguistic anthropology. This research also constitutes a historical (from Imperial to Early Modern period) and an ethnographic approach to the social, cultural and linguistic contacts between Southern ethnic groups (mainly the Hmong) and Han majority, and the ways in which these contacts have been played out in the spheres of mythological, political economic, ethnographic and poetic text-building. By doing so, it reveals that Early Modern Chinese nationalism has heterogeneous sources deriving from earlier intellectual histories.

    Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
    Keywords: Chinese Writer's Vicissitude; Political and cultural Context; Early Modern China;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Anthropology
    Item ID: 5613
    Depositing User: IR eTheses
    Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2014 12:00
    URI:

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