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以俗為雅:黎紫書的小說敘事藝術 Between Elite and Popularity: The Narrative Art of Li Zishu's Fictions


2023/24 School of Chinese Research Student Seminar



Between Elite and Popularity: The Narrative Art of Li Zishu's Fictions


Speaker: Miss ZHANG Mingying 張明滢 (MPhil)


Date & Time: April 26, 2024 (Fri) 17:30-18:45pm

Language: Putonghua

Venue: CPD-3.01, Central Podium Level 3, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU


Mode of Delivery: Face-to-face





Li Zishu is a famous contemporary Malaysian Chinese writer, and wrote a rich body of work which encompasses both the intricate language and narrative techniques of modernism, as well as the realistic portrayal of everyday life. This talk focuses on three aspects of her narrative art, namely, the representation of of the secular world of contemporary Malaysia, the use of different narrative voices, and the diverse use of different narrative structures, all of which contribute to her elite yet popular storytelling style. Regarding narrative themes, the author imbues "mundane objects" with symbolic meanings to express national ideals, demonstrating a thoughtful approach. In terms of narrative perspective, the first-person "I" narrative tends towards emotiveness, emphasizing the emotional release of characters and dramatic plot twists, while the second-person "you" narrative shifts towards intellectuality, prompting readers to observe and contemplate. The use of the third-person "he/she" perspective reveals a more objective and detached narrative approach, shifting the focus from the internal psyche of the characters to the external dynamics of social interactions. Finally, this report analyzes the diverse narrative structures in two of her novels, "The Age of Goodbyes" (2010) and "Vulgar Land" (2020). The former's multi-linear structure directs attention more towards its form than its story, while the latter, in contrast, features a loose structure that portrays mundane events and people through the interconnectedness of names, places, and objects.


ALL are welcome*

*Pre-registration (Click HERE) is requested.