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Lecture 3

EAS284H1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Rickshaw Boy, Beijing Dialect, Lao She

East Asian Studies
Course Code
Yurou Zhong

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24 installments in journal at first
1939 single volume edition
by 1950, already many foreign languages translation
committed suicide in Cultural Revolution
Lao she
is Manchu
A teacher of Chinese
language teacher in primary and high school
1939, quit job, and became a full-time writer
Beijing dialect
Lao She, “How I wrote Camel Xiangzi"
“CX was my first foray as a professional writer. If successful, then I could be bold enough to continue
my literary career and proceed to produce two novel a year. If my attempt fails miserably, then I shall
return to writing and possibly give up writing completely. Therefore, this novel played my
instrumental rule to my literary career"
humor - do not want put too much humor
simple plain language and Beijing dialect
Camel Xiangzi
Realist Novel
Lao She’s intérêt in realist literature
Two stories as kernel
1. a peasant was captured by solider, but he ran away and stole soldier’s camel
2. a story that a rickshaw puller gain and lost a rickshaw for 3 times
One center:
RICKSHAW - his ambitions, his ups and downs all related to rickshaws
Symbiosis of the rickshaw and the rickshaw boy
Three ups and downs
1. gets the first rickshaw - lost
2. gets the seed money - Sun takes it
3. Hu Niu buys him a new rickshaw - Hu Niu died, he sells the rickshaw to bury her.
In essays anything about the the plot in novel, use present tense.
A social critique
"A parable of individualism"
Homo economicus
A hint toward collectivism and social reform/revolution
Narrative interventions
although the story narrated in third person, but it was focused on Xiang Zi’s mental and point
of view.
But because Lao she uses third person language, he could still judge Xiang Zi
249 “Handsome,…..
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