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Corruption and Realism in Late Socialist ChinaThe Return of the Political Novel$
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Jeffrey Kinkley

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780804754859

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804754859.001.0001

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Anticorruption by Indirection: Wang Yuewen's National Portrait

Anticorruption by Indirection: Wang Yuewen's National Portrait

(p.104) 5 Anticorruption by Indirection: Wang Yuewen's National Portrait
Corruption and Realism in Late Socialist China
Stanford University Press

This chapter examines Wang Yuewen's political novel National Portrait. It explains that the problem tackled in this novel is municipal-level governance and that all the corruptions are reflected through the consciousness of a troubled municipal employee. The novel does not feature high-profile economic crimes and the only big case is the expansion of a hotel into a pleasure house and brothel, and its sale at an inflated price with the help of some bribes. The chapter also considers what the novel reveals about the limits on and of realism, and discusses its contribution to the corruption discourse.

Keywords:   National Portrait, Wang Yuewen, municipal-level governance, corruption, realism

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