Blog Archives

China Seminar 28 Feb: Maghiel van Crevel: Misfit: the Poetry of Xu Lizhi

MISFIT: THE POETRY OF XU LIZHI

Maghiel van Crevel

Battlers poetry 打工诗歌 is writing by members of the Chinese precariat, specifically the underclass of domestic migrants who have flocked from the countryside to the cities in the hundreds of millions since the 1980s. The hardships and the social injustice of migrant worker life are among its most prominent themes: dehumanizing labor conditions, feelings of displacement, nostalgia, and existential alienation, a vulnerable status as non-citizens without the coveted urban household registration and steady work, and so on. Since the 2000s, the web and social media have given it tremendous exposure, trickling beyond China’s borders in recent years.

So what kind of writing is this, and what does it do? The poetry of Xu Lizhi 许立志, who has been a figurehead of the genre ever since his suicide in 2014, offers powerful material for tackling these questions—which have often been framed in an easy opposition of social significance (high) and literary value (low) that might just not be the whole story.

Bio: Maghiel van Crevel is professor of Chinese at Leiden University, and the author, editor, and translator of a dozen books. He has recently published Walk on the Wild Side: Snapshots of the Chinese Poetry Scene,” a long essay inspired by fieldwork in China in 2016-2017.

 

The time slot for the China Seminar is always 15.15-17.00. The titles and abstracts will be distributed in due time.

Location: Leiden University, Faculty of Humanities. The Lipsius building is located at Cleveringaplaats 1.

 

Dates Venue Presenter Affiliation
28 February 2018 LIPSIUS 235 Maghiel van Crevel Leiden University
7 March 2018 LIPSIUS 235 Griet Vankeerberghen McGill University
28 March 2018 LIPSIUS 235 Monica Klasing Chen Leiden University
11 April 2018 LIPSIUS 235 Carolien Rieffe Leiden University
18 April 2018 t.b.d. Yu-chih Lai Academia Sinica
2 May 2018 LIPSIUS 235 Lin Fan Leiden University
23 May 2018 LIPSIUS 235 Limin Teh Leiden University

 

Chinese language films at the IFFR 24 Jan-4 Feb

International Film Festival Rotterdam 24 January-4 February

List of Chinese language films:

 

feature length

The Bold, the Corrupt and the Beautiful 血觀音, d: Yang Ya-che 楊雅喆, Taiwan 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/the-bold-the-corrupt-and-the-beautiful

 

Dragonfly Eyes 蜻蜓之眼, d: Xu Bing 徐冰, China 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/dragonfly-eyes

 

Father to Son 范保德, d: Hsiao Ya-chuan 萧雅全, Taiwan 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/father-to-son

 

Impermanence 云水, d: Zeng Zeng 曾赠, China 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/impermanence

 

Mrs. Fang 方秀英, d: Wang Bing 王兵,HK, France, Germany 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/mrs-fang

 

Silent Mist, d: Zhang Miaoyan 章淼焱, China/France 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/silent-mist

 

Stammering Ballad 黄河尕谣, d: Zhang Nan 张楠, China 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/stammering-ballad

 

The Widowed Witch 小寡妇成仙记, d: Cai Chengjie 蔡成杰, China 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/the-widowed-witch

 

Youth 芳华, d: Feng Xiaogang 冯小刚, China 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/youth

shorts

Extrastellar Evaluations III: Entropy: 25800 超星鑑定III:熵:25800 , d: Chen Yin-ju 陳瀅如,

Taiwan 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/extrastellar-evaluations-iii-entropy-25800

The film director’s website: http://www.yinjuchen.com/cv_english.html

 

I Have Nothing to Say 媽媽的口供, d: Ying Liang 應亮, Taiwan/HK 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/i-have-nothing-to-say

 

Re-Rupture 重新破裂, d: Hsu Che-Yu 許哲瑜, Taiwan 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/re-rupture

website: https://thisisanapple.blogspot.nl/

 

Star Ferry, d: Simon Liu, HK/Japan 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/star-ferry

 

The Walker, d: Su Hui-yu 蘇匯宇, Taiwan 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/the-walker

 

The Worldly Cave 凡洞, d: Zhou Tao 周滔, China 2017

(part of Ammodo Tiger Short Competition 3)

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/the-worldly-cave

 

Zhou Tao 周滔: Time Keeper

https://iffr.com/en/2018/combinedprogrammes/zhou-tao-time-keeper

consists of 5 shorts

 

 

China and/or Chinese language related in one way or another:

Agua Viva, d: Alexa Lim Haas, animated short, USA 20

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/agua-viva

 

Geomancer, d: Lawrence Lek, UK 2017

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/geomancer

website: http://www.fvu.co.uk/projects/geomancer

 

An Impossibly Small Object, d: David Verbeek, Taiwan/NL/Kroatië 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/an-impossibly-small-object

 

Liquid Landscape, d: Wang Nan, NL 2018

https://iffr.com/en/2018/films/liquid-landscape

CHILL! 6 December HU Han: To Er or not to Er? The changing er in the speech community of Beijing

CHILL!

Chinese Linguistics in Leiden

Last presentation of this season!

 

note: the talk originally planned for 29 November has been cancelled.

 

6 December 2017 (Wednesday) 15:15-16:30, Wijkplaats 4/005

HU Han (Leiden):

“To Er or not no Er? The changing er in the speech community of Beijing”

abstract It is well known that social changes have an impact on language variation and change. Nowadays, Beijing witnesses radical social changes in the process of urbanization. Erhua, as a characteristic feature of Beijing Mandarin, is undergoing a change with the change of society. In this talk, I will present some preliminary findings related to the social stratification of erhua and people’s attitudes towards erhua.

 

CHANGE IN TIME/VENUE for China Seminar 7 December: James A. Benn

Please note: James A. Benn’s talk has been moved forward two hours: to 7 December (Thursday), 13.15-15.00. The new venue is LIPSIUS 308.

title: The Creation of a Tea Aesthetic in Tang Dynasty Verse

Abstract: The values associated with tea today— that it is natural, health- giving, detoxifying, spiritual, stimulating, refreshing, and so on— are not new concepts. We find them already in the poetry of the Tang dynasty (618-907). In tea poetry we can catch a glimpse of the cultural synergy created by literati, poets, and Buddhist monks gathering to share and construct new standards of connoisseurship and creativity, as well as to develop new themes and imagery. Surviving poems describe the color, aroma, and taste of the beverage; methods for preparing tea; the shape of teaware; settings for drinking tea; appreciation of the various aesthetic, medicinal, and psychoactive qualities of the beverage; as well as the world of tea growing, picking, and preparation.

 

Thursday 7 December China seminar: James A. Benn

Title: The Creation of a Tea Aesthetic in Tang Dynasty Verse

Speaker: McMaster University    James A. Benn

Venue: EYCKH 2 – 005

Time: 7 December 2017, 15:15-17:00

Abstract: The values associated with tea today— that it is natural, health- giving, detoxifying, spiritual, stimulating, refreshing, and so on— are not new concepts. We find them already in the poetry of the Tang dynasty (618-907). In tea poetry we can catch a glimpse of the cultural synergy created by literati, poets, and Buddhist monks gathering to share and construct new standards of connoisseurship and creativity, as well as to develop new themes and imagery. Surviving poems describe the color, aroma, and taste of the beverage; methods for preparing tea; the shape of teaware; settings for drinking tea; appreciation of the various aesthetic, medicinal, and psychoactive qualities of the beverage; as well as the world of tea growing, picking, and preparation.

————————————————————————————————————————————–

                     

 

Upcoming talks this semester:

Dates Room Presenter Affiliation
7 December 2017 EYCKH2 – 005 James Benn McMaster University
13 December 2017 REUVENS 201a Rongdao Lai University of Southern California

 

23 Nov CHILL!: Rint Sybesma: VO-OV in Chinese languages and little v and Voice

CHILL!

Chinese linguistics in Leiden

 

Two more presentations to go:

 

23 November 2017 (Thursday) 15:15-16:30, Eyckhof 3/002

Rint SYBESMA (Leiden): VO-OV in Chinese languages and little v and Voice

 

VO-OV in Chinese languages and Voice and little v

 

abstract: In Chinese languages, both SVO and SOV surface orders are common. We see variation both within and between languages. Some languages, like Cantonese opt almost exclusively for SVO, while languages from the Wu and Min families tend to have SOV as soon as either the V or the O is more than just a bare V or a bare O. Mandarin, finally, shows both orders in several contexts. In this talk I try to find out whether we can understand what is going on if our analysis of these patterns involves Voice and little v, which may or may not be split or bundled all the time.

 

 

6 December 2017 (Wednesday) 15:15-16:30, Wijkplaats 4/005,

HU Han (Leiden): “To Er or not no Er? The changing er in the speech community of Beijing”

 

 

Note: the talk originally planned for 29 November has been cancelled.

17 Nov: Looking for a place to bathe: lecture & museum visit

LOOKING FOR A PLACE TO BATHE: missed opportunities of anchoring Manchu origins in Kangxi’s Overview Maps of the Imperial Territories.

Throughout history, governments have (mis)used maps to build identity among their subjects. For Manchu khans, anchoring Manchu identity has been a struggle from the beginning. In fact, ‘being Manchu’ was a construct that only started to appear in written sources since the 1620s. The fourth khan of the Manchus, Kangxi (r.1661-1722), started to map his empire, resulting in 41 individual sheets. These Overview Maps of the Imperial Territories (Huangyu quanlan tu) presented a good opportunity of showing his people how far they had come since his great grandfather Nurhaci had attacked the Ming in 1618. Not unimportant, this project gave him the canvas to map the narrative surrounding the origin the Manchu royal lineage and its subjects, which started with three maidens wanting to bathe. The question whether the Overview maps succeeded in anchoring Manchu origins is at the centre of this lecture.

Speaker: Fresco Sam-Sin (Leiden University / Research Center for Material Culture)
followed by visit to the Mapping Asia gallery at Volkenkunde.

Timing:

14:00: Lecture in Arsenaal, room 001
15:00: Walk to Mapping Asia gallery
16:36: end, followed by drinks?

https://www.eventbrite.nl/e/tickets-lecture-and-museum-visit-looking-for-a-place-to-bathe-39722003582

 

 

Chinese films at the Leiden International Film Festival

Film Program:

Monday 30th October 16:30, Our Time Will Come

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/our-time-will-come/2899

 

Tuesday 31st October 14:00, Our Time Will Come

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/our-time-will-come/2900

 

Tuesday 31st October 16:45 Big Fish & Begonia

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/big-fishbegonia/2577

 

Wednesday 1st November 13:45, Operation Mekong

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/operation-mekong/2897

 

Wednesday 1st November 18:45, Duckweed

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/duckweed/2869

 

Thursday 2nd  November 13:45, Duckweed

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/duckweed/2870

 

Saturday 4th November  16:15, Operation Mekong

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/operation-mekong/2898

 

Sunday 5th November 12:00, Big Fish & Begonia

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/big-fishbegonia/2578

 

Sunday 5th November 21:30, Our Time Will Come

https://www.liff.nl/Programma/Movie/our-time-will-come/2901

 

 

15 Nov China Seminar: Daniel Stumm

Lecture

Philologists, forgers and disciples: The complexities of authorship in 18th-century China

Date
15 November 2017
Time
15:15 – 17:00  hrs.
Series
China Seminar
Address
Van Wijkplaats 4
2311 BX Leiden
Room
005

In the 18th century, the topic of authorship began to dominate scholarly discussions in China. Every text had to be assigned to one author; any other mode of textual production was regarded as problematic. Especially early Chinese texts, however, did not fit into this model, as it was unclear who had written them. This talk addresses the manifold consequences that this incongruity generated in the late 18th century. Philologists saw the received text as unreliable, which threatened the authority of many works. Most scholars countered this tendency to doubt by dissecting received texts in order to separate authentic passages from later additions. A close reading of the arguments employed shows that a strong moralist bias influenced such research, leading Qing scholars to especially doubt the authenticity of passages they deemed morally dubious. Claims of inauthenticity thus functioned as a particularly effective way to imprint 18th-century values into the classics.

1 Nov China Seminar: Ching-Ling Wang on the Haiyu tu (1736)

Lecture

On a Newly Discovered See Fish Album (Haiyu tu, 1736) and the Formation of Knowledge in the 18th Century China

  • Dr. Ching-Ling Wang
Date
1 November 2017
Time
15:15 – 17:00  hrs.
Series
China Seminar
Address
Van Wijkplaats 2
2311 BX Leiden
Room
006

This lecture introduces a special newly discovered See Fish Album (Haiyu tu, 1736), composed by a local officer in Guandong in the collection of Museum für Asiatische Kunst, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. Illustrated books or albums of animals, birds, plants, fish, foreigners and aboriginals have emerged in the 18th century China. Such albums or books were commissioned to be made in the court and as well in local by the educated elites. The speaker will survey this album by putting into its pictorial context and historical context, through a detailed exam of the making of the See Fish Album to discuss issues of the formation and transmission of knowledge in the 18th century China.