Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics

by Mabel Lee and Liu Jianmei


"The chapters in Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics manage to build a convincing case that Gao is an original artist with an original take on all of the creative forms he utilizes. ... Gao’s originality in literature, theatre, painting, film, and philosophy is meticulously elucidated ... this important edited collection may be a tantilizing invitation for future scholars to more deeply probe the constellation of media aesthetics in Gao’s works." —MCLC

“No modern figure writing in Chinese better epitomizes the notion of global author than Gao Xingjian, a creative voice whose courage and ingenuity are indelibly imprinted on world literature. This new collection testifies to the enduring effect Gao has on scholars the world over. Interdisciplinary in scope, Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics investigates issues as far-flung as the philosophical implications of his work, his engagement with issues of gender, his religious inquiries, and his artistic creativity. Gao Xingjian’s restless intellect has driven him to delve into novel writing, criticism, drama, ink painting, and even cinema, and all these various dimensions are addressed in this compendium. Complete with an interview of the author, the broad range of subjects and intellectual approaches ensures this book will be of great interest to modern scholars of Chinese and comparative literature as well as students of Gao Xingjian for generations to come.” —Christopher Lupke, Professor and Chair, Department of East Asian Studies, University of Alberta

”This exuberantly interdisciplinary volume examines Gao Xingjian’s eclectic oeuvre from a variety of different perspectives, ranging from the aesthetic to the philosophical.” —Carlos Rojas, Professor of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, Duke University

“This collection offers a valuable mixture of critical appreciations and scholarly essays dealing with the work of Gao Xingjian, the winner of the 2000 Nobel Prize for Literature. By focusing on ways in which Gao's aesthetic theory and practice reach across a range of different artistic media, and also into areas of philosophy, Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics adds significantly to our knowledge of Gao’s oeuvre in all its complexity.” —Michel Hockx, Professor of Chinese Literature and Director of the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies, University of Notre Dame

Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics provides insightful and elaborate elucidations of Gao’s already well-studied works (his famous avant-garde theatrical experiments in the post-Mao 1980s, and his representative works after the 1990s), the lesser-known aspects of Gao’s aesthetic oeuvres (in particular, the philosophical and theoretical underpinnings), as well as his illustrating and illuminating reconfiguration of self-world in the cutting-edge fields of trans-genre, trans-media, trans-discipline, and trans-culture. Located at the nexus of literary scrutiny, philosophical investigation, (auto)biographical approach, interdisciplinary study, and multimedia interpretation, this fascinating, comprehensive, and important volume about Gao Xingjian, a Nobel Laureate and present-day Renaissance Man, forcefully presents the multilayered dimensions of Gao’s diversified, contested, and connected literary and artistic world, and impressively covers a great range of different genres and styles from dramatic creations to fictional representations, ink painting to dance and music, and art exhibitions to cinematic poetry.” —Weijie Song, Associate Professor of Chinese Literature, Rutgers University

“This is one of the most comprehensive studies of Gao Xingjian’s works. The unique strength of this book lies in the variety of expertise and the wide range of disciplinary approaches that the authors bring to the study of Gao, the playwright, the novelist, the poet, the painter, and the philosopher. Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics provides a panoramic view on Gao Xingjian’s many talents through a well-orchestrated effort to examine the transmedia aesthetics that connect these talents. This book will be an essential resource for readers seeking to understand Gao Xingjian, one of the most important contemporary writers, as well as the questions that his writings, paintings, and experimental media works have pointed to, relating tradition to the contemporary world, identity to representational modes, and self to philosophical reflections.” —Mingwei Song, Associate Professor of Chinese, Wellesley College


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