Cheng Xiaoqing (1893-1976) and His Detective Stories in Modern Shanghai

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GRIN Verlag, 2010 - 116 pages
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Thesis (M.A.) from the year 1998 in the subject Orientalism / Sinology - Chinese / China, grade: 1, University of Hamburg, language: English, abstract: Cheng Xiaoqing, the author of the Huo Sang cases, was one of the most prolific and successful Chinese detective fiction authors of the so-called Mandarin Duck and Butterfly School." In China, Western detective fiction was introduced at the turn of the 19th century. Cheng Xiaoqing was among the first Chinese authors to not only translate, but also create original works in the genre. The author adopted the main framework of Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes case - the very standard of the classical Western detective story - and created the "Eastern Sherlock Holmes," Huo Sang, and his secretary Bao Lang, the "Dr. Watson of the East." The figure of Huo Sang shows several superficial similarities derivative of the classical Western detective a la Sherlock Holmes. In addition, the character also incorporates fundamental elements of Chinese literature draw from traditional figures such as the famous Judge Bao in classical court-case fiction and from the traditional chivalric heroes within the knight-errant tradition. Thus, Cheng did not merely create another British detective implanted into Shanghai. Instead, he fabricated a Chinese detective who is a synthesis of Western and Eastern influences and who reflects the contradictions and tensions of the environment he operates in. The story of China's meeting with modern detective fiction can, thus, be seen as a microcosm of China's encounter with the West. Cheng's import of the detective novel into a different cultural and political context required the employment of figures, settings and situations that offered relevant and compelling meanings for the contemporary reader. By merging different genres and thereby creating detective stories that were not just imitating the Western model, but also interweaving it with traditional elements of Chinese literary tradition. Cheng's inn

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Cheng Xiaoqing
Huo Sang
Appendix B Translation of the Essays The Literary Value of the Detective Storyand
Selected Bibliography of Cheng Xiaoqings Work

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