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Xiaofei Tian

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9789888528448

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888528448.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM HONG KONG SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hongkong.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hong Kong University Press, 2022. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HKSO for personal use.date: 19 May 2022

Six Modernist Poets in Search of Du Fu

Six Modernist Poets in Search of Du Fu

(p.143) 9 Six Modernist Poets in Search of Du Fu
Reading Du Fu

David Der-wei Wang

Hong Kong University Press

Conventional wisdom has it that Chinese modernism arose as part of the May Fourth literary reform, a movement purportedly predicated on radical anti-traditionalism. The fact that Du Fu is the “author” worshiped by multiple modern Chinese poets during the past century prods us to reconsider the motivations of Chinese literary modernity. Their “search” for the ancient “sage of poetry” not only points to a unique dialogical relationship between the moderns and a premodern “author” but also offers an important clue to the genealogy of Chinese literary modernity. The way in which Chinese modernists have continually treated Du Fu as a source of inspiration, finding in him a kindred spirit, is a highly intriguing phenomenon. This essay introduces six modernist Chinese and Sinophone poets in search of Du Fu—Huang Canran 黃燦然‎, Xi Chuan 西川‎, Wai-lim Yip 葉維廉‎, Xiao Kaiyu 蕭開愚‎, Luo Fu 洛夫‎, and Luo Qing 羅青‎—along with their aspirations and conjurations, appropriations and revisions.

Keywords:   author, modernism, simulation, emulation, “poetry as history”

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