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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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Chinese Realism, Popular Culture, and the Critics

Chinese Realism, Popular Culture, and the Critics

(p.144) 7 Chinese Realism, Popular Culture, and the Critics
Corruption and Realism in Late Socialist China
Stanford University Press

This chapter examines realism as a coherent and valuable modern Chinese tradition. It shows that realism in Chinese anticorruption fiction was a critical realism of some depth, not just a schlock realism which justified the critics' neglect. The chapter discusses the place of Chinese realism in theory and history, and contends that most fiction about corruption and officialdom does not fit the high theorists' idea of China as postsocialist, postpolitical, or postbureaucratic. It argues that the main problem with anticorruption fiction is its not being part of mass culture, and being part of purely nonofficial culture.

Keywords:   Chinese realism, anticorruption fiction, officialdom, mass culture, nonofficial culture

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