Our World, the Waste Land: American and Chinese Modernist Fiction in the Early Twentieth Century

Our World, the Waste Land: American and Chinese Modernist Fiction in the Early Twentieth Century

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The introduction chapter of this project defines qthe waste landq aesthetics and touches upon its significance in both America and Chinese contexts. It provides the social, cultural, and historical background of China in the first half of the twentieth century. It also sketches a background on Chinese modernization, introducing the various schools of Chinese modernism, and summarizes how Chinese modernism parallel with and different from modernization in the West. The subsequent chapters are close-readings and analysis of the individual American and Chinese authors in pairs. The chapters progress in a linear way. That is, the sense of disillusionment and desolation deepens with the decades past. The first chapter is on the city modernists F. Scott Fitzgerald and Mu Shiying. The second chapter is on Ernest Hemingway and Zhang Ailing who particularly responded to the horror of mass war and revolutions. The third chapter is on Djuna Barnes and Xiao Hong who express modern women's distress. What holds these figures together, besides thematic connections, was their commitment to formal invention. Formalistic innovations dedicated to representing new sense of alienation and the literary roots of each representation are equally important.For example, figurative language relating to aquot;wasteaquot; is used to describe Gatsbya#39; s party: aquot;Every Friday five crates of oranges ... has really become nothing but a gaudy extravagance The lives of the urbanites, to a great extend, are also a aquot; waste.


Title:Our World, the Waste Land: American and Chinese Modernist Fiction in the Early Twentieth Century
Author: Mei Zhu
Publisher:ProQuest - 2006
ISBN-13:

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