The Scholar and the State
Fiction as Political Discourse in Late Imperial China
In this study, Liangyan Ge examines the novels Romance of the Three Kingdoms, The Scholars, Dream of the Red Chamber (also known as Story of the Stone), and a number of erotic pieces, showing that as the literati class grappled with its own increasing marginalization, its fiction reassessed the assumption that intellectuals' proper role was to serve state interests and began to imagine possibilities for a new political order.
About the Author
"What makes his study worth reading is the way he finds surprisingly original readings within this central frame-work. . . . Ge breathes life into his overarching theme by contextualizing the central literary works with a rich and historically-informed set of other texts. . . . In putting the relationship between scholar and state at the heart of vernacular fiction, Ge has provided us with a strong account some of the classics of the late-imperial novel. . . . Ge offers a reading that escapes narrow-minded literary criticism as a purely aesthetic pursuit."—Paize Keulemans, China Quarterly, The
Other Titles in HISTORY / Asia / China