Magazine article Chinese Literature Today

Voices in Revolution: Poetry and the Auditory Imagination in Modern China

Magazine article Chinese Literature Today

Voices in Revolution: Poetry and the Auditory Imagination in Modern China

Article excerpt

(ProQuest: ... denotes non-US-ASCII text omitted.)

John A. Crespi. Voices in Revolution: Poetry and the Auditory Imagination in Modern China. Nonfiction. University of Hawai'i Press. Honolulu. 2009. x + 228. $47.00. ISBN 9780824833657

Voice is rooted in the will but requires significant art and opportunity to make it heard. Crespi applies a keen apprehension of historical continuity and influence along with poignant and honest literary analysis to enable poetic recitation (langsong ...)-both imagined and vocalized-to renew our understanding of poetry's evolution in China. In the process, he draws attention to his own important critical voice.

In the first four chapters of his work, Crespi combines close readings of key texts central to the general evolution of Chinese poetry (Lu Xun's "The Power of Mara Poetry," Hu Shi's "On New Poetry," Yu Pingbo's "Return to Origins in the Evolution of Poetry") with lesser-known pieces (Chen Nanshi's "Poet's Joy") to convincingly establish a clear conceptual foundation for the debut of poetic recitation during the War of Resistance, Mao's sponsorship of the practice of recitation, and the later reemergence of recitation in real-estate-sponsored literary festivals. The current renaissance of recitation performance in Beijing finds its roots in the familiar but always intriguing mix of traditional Confucian understandings and intellectual designs for poetic production, and in the competing demands of post-imperial nationand folk-building. Contemporary cultural events (huodong ...), while now often staged for commercial purposes, trace their lineage back to the likes of Guang Weiran, the "salvational vanguard" to a somnolent people under Japanese occupation, and to the Recitation Research Team actors of emotionraising literary contests under Mao. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.