Publication Date

5-23-2013

Advisor(s)

Ao Wang

Major

East Asian Studies (EAST)

Language

English (United States)

Abstract

In the aftermath of the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), many Chinese writers felt that their culture was rootless: the Cultural Revolution denounced traditional culture as corrupting and counter-revolutionary, and the new move towards Westernization in the 1980s further threatened traditional and folk cultures. These authors sought the roots of Chinese cultural identity in rural and peripheral cultures, and called themselves "Xungen" or "roots-seeking." Although theses authors looked into China's myths and memories to find the origins of Chinese cultural identity, they also looked to Latin American Magical Realism for inspiration; there is a deep kinship between Magical Realism and Xungen, and both movements are part of a larger cross-cultural literary dialogue that spans continents and centuries.

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