The Martial and the Military in Chinese Popular Culture
- Popular Culture in 20th Century China - SLN 12495 - VLPA/I&S
Comp Lit 322A
- Studies in Asian & Western Literature - SLN 11875 - VLPA
Winter 2021: MW 1:30-3:20 PM (Remote)
Professor Chris Hamm, Asian Language & Literature
Office Hours: T, Th 10:30-11:20 am, Zoom ID 933 4939 4850
The popular culture of 20th-century China abounds in images and tales of heroic warriors. While rich with contemporary significance, this material often represents China’s cultural past; and by championing an essential Chinese identity, this material has played a role in defining Chinese positions in a multicultural, multinational age. In this course we will first examine the pre-modern roots of China’s heroic traditions, then move on to their expression in a variety of 20th-century fiction and film, including revolutionary model operas, martial arts fiction, and Hong Kong gangster movies. We will combine analysis of literary and cinematic works with discussion of relevant secondary scholarship and study of the social and historical contexts of cultural production.
Recommended for anyone with an interest in Chinese literature, culture, or history. No prerequisites, though previous coursework in literature or any aspect of China studies will enrich your experience in the course. All readings and coursework are in English; films are in Chinese with English subtitles. Students are required to prepare assigned readings and viewings, complete weekly reading/viewing responses, participate in class discussions and exercises, and take quizzes and examinations. Please contact the instructor for further information.
Components and Assessment