Title

Opening the cultural mind : translation and the modern Chinese literary canon

Document Type

Journal article

Source Publication

Modern Language Quarterly : A Journal of Literary History

Publication Date

1-1-2008

Volume

69

Issue

1

First Page

13

Last Page

27

Abstract

Translation has played a critical role in forming the modern Chinese literary canon and continues to stimulate its change and expansion. It is instrumental to the exchange and synthesis of foreign narrative modes and aesthetic paradigms. There are obvious political, cultural, and literary reasons for the formation of a literary canon, and to a degree literary production is inseparable from cross-cultural (re)production. The literary canon appropriates and is also appropriated by translations. Many modern Chinese literary concepts derive from translations, especially of Western literary and theoretical writings. By investigating the assimilation of translations into the Chinese literary canon, this essay focuses on a hybridized political and cultural discourse that marks a radical shift in aesthetic and cultural sensibilities in modern Chinese literature. The call for reshaping the literary canon responds to changing modes of discourse in foreign literatures. The effects of canon formation reveal the patterns of the canon's manipulation and expansion in the modern Chinese political, cultural, and literary context.

DOI

10.1215/00267929-2007-022

Print ISSN

00267929

E-ISSN

15271943

Publisher Statement

Copyright © 2008 University of Washington

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Full-text Version

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Recommended Citation

Sun, Y. (2008). Opening the cultural mind: Translation and the modern Chinese literary canon. Modern Language Quarterly: A Journal of Literary History, 69(1), 13-27. doi: 10.1215/00267929-2007-022