In this course we will read tales of sex and murder, of love and redemption, of ghosts and monsters, and of life and death. As such, it is a vivid depiction of life and society in all its ugliness and beauty during the last decades of the Ming dynasty. These tales are largely drawn from an English translation of the 17th century collection of short, vernacular fiction known as Gujin xiaoshuo (Stories Old and New) as well as selections from subsequent collections. The course is discussion based, with periodic short writing assignments. Previous experience with Chinese literature and history is useful but not required. Topics of discussion will be wide-ranging but will include late Ming education, the literary representation of sex and gender, and the generic conventions of short vernacular fiction in the seventeenth century. Students new to Chinese literature are very welcome. Taught in English.
A&S IQ:HUM, LCD:BU, IS:EN, H: