Since the mid-1980’s the theme of “home” or “homeland” has appeared in contemporary Chinese novels. This theme has been brought up in a cultural movement, which advocates historical consciousness, cultural rethinking, and humanitarian concerns....[ Read more ]
Since the mid-1980’s the theme of “home” or “homeland” has appeared in contemporary Chinese novels. This theme has been brought up in a cultural movement, which advocates historical consciousness, cultural rethinking, and humanitarian concerns.
Relating to this theme, fairly extensive discussions have been made among the scholars. From these literary critiques, some reviewable questions are raised. First of all, the most general discussions about this topic have been focused on the linkages between authors and the mass, or the postmodernity in these novels. Therefore, it is worth examining other dimensions about this topic, in considering how the imagined home is presented and located. Secondly, regarding the cultural and literary developments in contemporary China, there is a watershed between 1980s’ “root searching” literature and the literature in 1990s. Then, how the presentations of the imagined homes have varied among different authors? And, lastly, what is the ideology beneath the representation of imagined home by the contemporary Chinese writers?
This research covers how do the writers located their identities and the regions they imagined as “home”. During the Cultural Revolution, Mo Yan and Li Rui travelled across the countryside while they were in the Red Guards. These memories and experiences, which had a great affect on them, influence their rethinking of “home”. In this thesis, it is discussed that Mo Yan and Li Rui represent their imagined homes by using various narrative techniques and mythological legends. Considering the ideological background of post-revolutionary China, it is analysed how the alternative history is represented to contrast with the grand narrative of the official history influenced by the ideology of Culture Revolution. In this aspect, the notion of mock-heroic is examined in the context of the imaginary home.
In relocating home, how do the writers consider their homes as imagined communities, with rethinking of history, humanistic thought and deconstructing ideology? This is the main subject for analysis in this thesis.