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Tales of Futures Past – Anticipation and the Ends of Literature in Contemporary China - Stanford Scholarship Online
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Tales of Futures Past: Anticipation and the Ends of Literature in Contemporary China

Paola Iovene


Twentieth-century Chinese literature has been characterized by an obsession with the future, an obsession that is often commented on but rarely scrutinized. Most studies of Chinese literature conflate the category of the future with notions of progress and nation-building, and with the utopian visions propagated by the Maoist and post-Mao developmental state. The future thus understood has often been seen as a “destination” a preconceived endpoint that is propagated, at times even imposed, by a center of power. By contrast, Tales of Futures Past introduces the concept of “anticipation” as a le ... More

Keywords: Chinese modernity, Chinese modernis, modern Chinese literature, contemporary Chinese literature, Chinese science fiction, science popularization, translation, future, environmental literature, Ge Fe

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2014 Print ISBN-13: 9780804789370
Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: January 2015 DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804789370.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Paola Iovene, author
The University of Chicago