L-OR/21 - 6 CFU - 1° Semester

Teaching Staff


Learning Objectives

The course is designed in order to provide a satisfactory and thorough knowledge of the cultural production in China, in the field of poetry, art and music, from the end of the Cultural Revolution to the beginning of 21st century.

Course Structure

The course will alternate frontal and interactive lessons, also including projections of films as a fundamental tool of integration to the theoretical content.

Detailed Course Content

1) The "scar literature": origins; context; key themes 2) Trauma in Chinese literature and the children of the Cultural Revolution: Yu Hua and Zhang Yimou 3) Projection of the film To Live (活着, 1994) and comparison with the novel of the same name (1992)

4) Introspective literature and scars in the works of Chinese writers 5) Wang Bing and the documentary He Fengming Chronicle of a Chinese woman (2007) 6) Conclusions on scar literature: works and authors who drew on it in the following decades; evolution of the Chinese cultural scene.

7) Introduction to the literature of the "search for roots": origins, aims, themes and authors 8) The roots in the (yellow) earth: projection and analysis of the film by Chen Kaige Yellow Earth (黄土地, 1984) 9) Alternative interpretations of the neo-traditionalism in novels and fifth generation Chinese cinema.

10) "New historical novel" and literary avant-garde in the work of Su Tong and Mo Yan 11) comparison between novel Wives and Concubines (妻妾1991) and film adaptation Raise the red lantern (1992) by Zhang Yimou

12) The profile of 流氓 liumang new identities in a new China 13) The Cultural Revolution and the possibility of a good memory: the controversies about In The Heat of the Sun (1994) 14) China enters the global market: impact of the global economy on Chinese literature 15) Zhang Yimou's urban experiment and China's description of liumangs in the movie Keep Cool (有 话 好好 说, 1997)

16) Style and themes in Wang Shuo's work: are new reformers and old communist cadres the same? 17) The "two brothers" paradigm in Chinese literature and cinema 18) Projection and analysis of the film by Wang Xiaoshuai Beijing Bicycle (2001)

19) Literature in commercial China (Yu Hua's Brothers) and the new commercial cinema 20) 1997 in Chinese cinema and reveal of two objectives: Xiao Wu 小吴 by Jia Zhangke and 甲方 乙方 (The Dream Factory) by Feng Xiaogang

21) Projection and analysis of Xiao Wu

22) Gao Xingjian, a displaced Chinese intellectual, only citizen of the "country of memory"

23) The literary case of Mian Mian and Zhou Weihui, globalised culture and the alienation of the "lost women of China" 24) The new female voies of Chinese independent cinema: Liu Jiayin and her film-elegy on family life Oxhide 牛皮 (2005)

25) Themes and works by Han Han, Zhang Yueran and Chun Shu 26) Guo Jingming and the saga Tiny Times 小时代 (2013-2015)

27) Visual poetry and poetic vision: Suzhou River (2000) by Lou Ye and the poetry of the migrant workers from Picun village

Textbook Information

  1. N. Pesaro, M. Pirazzoli, La narrativa cinese del Novecento, Carocci, 2019
  2. Y. Huang, Chinese Literature, From the Cultural Revolution to the Future, Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.
  3. Z. Hong, A History of Contemporary Chinese Literature, (trad. Michael. M. Day), Brill Academic Pub, 2008.
  4. Acheng, La Trilogia dei Re, (trad. Maria Rita Masci), Edizioni Theoria, 2018
  5. Su Tong, Mogli e Concubine, (trad. Maria Rita Masci), Universale Economica Feltrinelli, 2012
  6. Yu Hua, Vivere, Universale Economica Feltrinelli, (trad. Nicoletta Pesaro), 2012
  7. Mian Mian, Nove oggetti di desiderio, (trad. Maria Rita Masci), 2001

Lecture notes and various material provided by the professor.

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