Please join the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Chicago (CEAS) for their China Lecture Series featuring Professor Michel Hockx, Professor of Chinese Literature and Director of the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies at the University of Notre Dame, on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. (Central Standard Time).
Professor Hockx will be speaking on "The Regulations of Literature in Xi Jinping's China." Ever since the start of the reform era in the late 1970s, there has been an understanding between the Chinese leadership and Chinese writers that literature need no longer function as propaganda, the way it was expected to under Mao. The current leader Xi Jinping, in his public statements about literature, has maintained this consensus and often confirmed the independent aesthetic value of writing. At the same time, though, PRC cultural regulatory institutions are attempting to push literary writing and writers in a specific direction, often using moral rather than political arguments. Much ideological pressure is also being exerted on publishers and authors of online genre fiction, which has developed into a major cultural industry.
This lecture takes a closer look at the mechanisms employed to regulate literary production in Xi Jinping’s China, by looking at official documents outlining the perceived role and responsibilities of both printed and online literature and its publishers. The paper also addresses the ambiguous manner in which the Chinese Writers Association promotes these policies while maintaining independent aesthetic principles. Professor Hockx concludes with a brief case study of the genre of “pandemic poetry” as an example of the kind of writing that the state promotes.
To register for this event, please click the Zoom link HERE.
Megumi Kim, Center Administrator