A Brief Overview of Chinese-Language Scholarship on Modern Chinese Literature

Chen Sihe, Alvin Ka Hin Wong

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Citations (Scopus)


The development of modern Chinese literature as a new discipline can be divided into three phases. The first phase of "new literature" (1917-49) pursued literary criticism at the same time when new trends in literary production occurred. The second phase of "modern literature" (1949-85) refashioned "modern" as a political concept and instituted modern Chinese literature as a discipline. The third phrase of "modern and contemporary literature" (since 1985) has witnessed the spread of "twentieth-century literature" that studies the literary development of the entire century. Since the 1990s, literary studies have followed literary production and formed several schools: some insist on enlightenment and the elite intellectual position; some promote a folk cultural perspective and populist idealism; some investigate modernity and the relationship between literature and society; and still some emphasize popular culture and cultural studies. All this demonstrates modern Chinese literature is a vibrant field of diversity and heterogeneity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Companion to Modern Chinese Literature
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781118451588
ISBN (Print)9781118451625
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Aug 14

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. All rights reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities(all)


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