The Last Classic Chinese Novel: Vision and Design in the Travels of Laocan

Submitted by James Miller on Mon, 05/25/2009 - 12:28
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TitleThe Last Classic Chinese Novel: Vision and Design in the Travels of Laocan
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsLin, S. -fu
JournalJournal of the American Oriental Society
Volume121
Issue4
Pagination549–564
Date PublishedDec
Abstract

The Travels of Laocan, one of the most famous works of fiction from the turn of the twentieth century, is here considered as the last classic Chinese novel. The complex literary and cultural contexts of the end of the Qing dynasty, in which the author, Liu E, lived and wrote are noted. Discussion then focuses on the structure and "lyric vision" of the novel, including matters of authorial point of view, Liu E's bifurcation of his fictional world into one dealing with the harsh realities in the China of his day and one with idealized characters and utopian settings, and the unresolved conflict between the central character's scientific attitude toward things and his attraction to traditional Chinese values.

URLhttp://www.jstor.org/stable/606498