Wang in Love and Bondage: Three Novellas by Wang Xiaobo

Wang Xiaobo

Published by SUNY Press, 2008
ISBN 10: 0791470660 / ISBN 13: 9780791470664
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Synopsis: The first English translation of work by Wang Xiaobo, one of the most important writers of twentieth-century China.

From the Back Cover: Acclaimed as one of the most important writers of twentieth-century China, the late Wang Xiaobo (1952-1997) is known for his frank, often antic treatment of sex and his gift for reveling in human absurdity and provoking laughter from horror. Comprised of three novellas, "The Golden Age," "East Palace, West Palace," and "2015," this book is the first English translation of his work.

"East Palace, West Palace," one of the first contemporary Chinese fictional works dealing with male homosexuality, is an S/M-oriented love story between a masochistic gay writer and a handsome policeman unaware of his sadistic tendencies. In "The Golden Age," for which Wang Xiaobo is perhaps best known, the protagonist, Wang Er (literally, Wang number two) is a city student sent to the countryside for rustification during the Cultural Revolution. There he meets a lovely young doctor whom he encourages to live up to her undeserved reputation as "damaged goods." In "2015," another Wang Er, after being put into a labor camp for practicing painting without a license, becomes the love object of a sadistic policewoman.

Although the sexual and social roles of Wang Xiaobo's characters intertwine, sexuality functions not as protest but as an absurd metaphor for state power and the voluntary, even enthusiastic, collaboration of those subject to it. Full of deadpan humor and oddball sex, Wang Xiaobo's novellas allow us to see, through a subtly shifting kaleidoscope, scenes from the elaborate dance the individual must do with the state in twentieth-century China.

"Wang's deeply convincing novellas will certainly please the readers who have enjoyed recent Nobel Prize-winner Gao Xingjian's novel, Soul Mountain." -- Publishers Weekly

"The late Wang Xiaobo is not known in the West. However, this fine collaborative translation of Wang's unconventional and engaging novellas will change that, and call into question any stereotypical views of contemporary Chinese fiction." -- Howard Goldblatt, University of Notre Dame

"Hongling Zhang and Jason Sommer have done a remarkable job with their judicious choices, accurate renditions of the Chinese originals, and faithful preservation of the author's irreverent attitude toward everything in sight." -- Yunzhong Shu, author of Buglers on the Homefront: The Wartime Practice of the Qiyue School

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Title: Wang in Love and Bondage: Three Novellas by ...
Publisher: SUNY Press
Publication Date: 2008
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Used: Good

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