Book Reviews / T’oung Pao 98 (2012) 270-294 291 © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2012 DOI: 10.1163/156853212X637281 Green Peony and the Rise of the Chinese Martial Arts Novel . By Margaret B. Wan. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2009. x + 235 pp. e ﬁ rst page of Margaret Wan’s monograph gestures at “the martial arts novel” in terms that seem to echo the transhistorical, Chinese-universalist rhetoric so often attaching itself to wuxia xiaoshuo 㬎ᾈ⮷婒 in fan forums and academic discussions alike: e martial arts novel is the most widely read genre of Chinese ﬁ ction today, avidly consumed throughout the Chinese-speaking world and beyond. As essentially the only genre of traditional popular ﬁ ction to have survived beyond the imperial era in China, it is the oldest genre of Chinese popular ﬁ ction still being written. (p. 1) By the end of the ﬁ rst chapter, however, Wan has circumscribed a far more con- crete and consequently far more signiﬁ cant object of investigation. Over the course of this chapter she deals brieﬂ y with the ﬁ gure of the martial hero as the thematic core of the tradition; assigns to the notoriously
T'oung Pao – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2012
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