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China's Chaplin: Comic Stories and Farces by Xu Zhuodai (review)

China's Chaplin: Comic Stories and Farces by Xu Zhuodai (review) BOOK REVIEWS 593 China CHINA’S CHAPLIN: COMIC STORIES AND FARCES. By Xu Zhuodai, translated and with an introduction by Christopher Rea. Ithaca, New York: East Asia Program, Cornell University, 2019. 263 pp. Cloth, $65. Together with Weimar Berlin and pre-WWII New York, Republican Shanghai has become a historic city symbolic of the tumultuous development of capitalism in the first half of the twentieth century. This curated image of Old Shanghai contributes to and is in turn shaped by the city’s rise as a global financial and business center in recent years. Accompanying our cultural imagination of the metropolis are mushrooming fictions, non-fictions, films, and theatre as well as Shanghai studies, an academic field that has been expanding since the 1980s. In contrast to these interpretive efforts that either conform to or interrogate the “Old Shanghai” construct, translations of primary sources, especially popular writings, are scarce. Luckily, China’s Chaplin, Christopher Rea’s translation of Xu Zhuodai’s comic stories and farces, is a step to remedy this gap in the current scholarship. The project is an extension of Rea’s 2015 book The Age of Irreverence: A New History of Laughter in China in which he investigates Chinese modernity from the 1890s to http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Asian Theatre Journal University of Hawai'I Press

China's Chaplin: Comic Stories and Farces by Xu Zhuodai (review)

Asian Theatre Journal , Volume 37 (2) – Oct 13, 2020

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © The University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1527-2109

Abstract

BOOK REVIEWS 593 China CHINA’S CHAPLIN: COMIC STORIES AND FARCES. By Xu Zhuodai, translated and with an introduction by Christopher Rea. Ithaca, New York: East Asia Program, Cornell University, 2019. 263 pp. Cloth, $65. Together with Weimar Berlin and pre-WWII New York, Republican Shanghai has become a historic city symbolic of the tumultuous development of capitalism in the first half of the twentieth century. This curated image of Old Shanghai contributes to and is in turn shaped by the city’s rise as a global financial and business center in recent years. Accompanying our cultural imagination of the metropolis are mushrooming fictions, non-fictions, films, and theatre as well as Shanghai studies, an academic field that has been expanding since the 1980s. In contrast to these interpretive efforts that either conform to or interrogate the “Old Shanghai” construct, translations of primary sources, especially popular writings, are scarce. Luckily, China’s Chaplin, Christopher Rea’s translation of Xu Zhuodai’s comic stories and farces, is a step to remedy this gap in the current scholarship. The project is an extension of Rea’s 2015 book The Age of Irreverence: A New History of Laughter in China in which he investigates Chinese modernity from the 1890s to

Journal

Asian Theatre JournalUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Oct 13, 2020

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