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Conferenza di JI Yueling: “Reading Lu Xun in Chinese Middle Schools, 1925-2017”
Novembre 6 ore 14:30 – 16:30
Reading Lu Xun in Chinese Middle Schools, 1925-2017
JI Yueling (University of Chicago)
Lunedì 6 novembre 2023, ore 14.30
Università degli Studi di Milano, Polo MIC, Aula T9
Lu Xun may be considered the greatest writer of modern China by academic literary critics, but the general public, who are uninvolved in academic discourses, come into contact with the author through a different channel: in the schools, i.e. the mass education programs, where students study canonical literary works as a means to learn to read and write in the national language. This presentation begins with a historical survey that summarizes the pedagogical use of Lu Xun’s writings in the middle-school Chinese language and literature curriculum from the 1920s through the present day. It then analyzes a specific aspect of this pedagogical reading and its implications: Since the primary goal of reading in middle schools is the education of literacy, how does this goal impact the way in which the student-readers experience Lu Xun? Does the classroom reading experience play a role in shaping the public reception of Lu Xun in modern China, and if so, how? This presentation argues that mass literacy education has been instrumental in maintaining Lu Xun’s canonical status since the beginning of the twentieth century, but it also opens up an opportunity for a unique kind of criticism of the author.
Ji Yueling is a Teaching Fellow at the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago, where she received her doctorate in 2023. Her research and teaching center around modern Chinese literature. Her current research project, focusing on history of criticism, identifies and critiques the methodology of modern Chinese literary criticism through an analysis of its discourses about style.
L’incontro è organizzato dal Contemporary Asia Research Centre (CARC) e dall’Istituto Confucio dell’Università degli Studi di Milano, in collaborazione con il Dipartimento di Lingue, Letterature, Culture e Mediazioni dell’Università degli Studi di Milano.