The Real Story of Ah-Q and Other Tales of China: The Complete Fiction of Lu Xun (Penguin Classics)

The Real Story of Ah-Q and Other Tales of China: The Complete Fiction of Lu Xun (Penguin Classics)

Language: English

Pages: 448

ISBN: 0140455485

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


The acclaimed translation of the complete fiction of the father of modern Chinese literature
 
Lu Xun is one of the founding figures of modern Chiense literature. In the early twentieth century, as China came up against the realities of the modern world, Lu Xun effected a shift in Chinese letters away from the ornate, obsequious literature of the aristocrats to the plain, expressive literature of the masses. His celebrated short stories assemble a powerfully unsettling portrait of the superstition, poverty, and complacency that he perceived in late imperial China and in the revolutionary republic that toppled the last dynasty in 1911. This volume presents Lu Xun's complete fiction in bracing new translations and includes such famous works as "The Real Story of Ah-q," "Diary of a Madman," and "The Divorce." Together they expose a contradictory legacy of cosmopolitan independence, polemical fractiousness, and anxious patriotism that continues to resonate in Chinese intellectual life today.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

more, he was. So one day, as he was drinking the milk, he thought to himself how fat the deer was, and how delicious its meat would taste. Then he reached out for a stone – but he didn’t know the magic deer could read men’s minds. So she just disappeared in a puff of smoke. Heaven was so disgusted by their greed, he told the roe deer to stop coming. They deserved to starve! I had nothing to do with it – they brought it on themselves, the greedy wretches.’ Her audiences always sighed as she

heat, craned his head over the top of the cauldron. All he saw was the surface of the water, calm as a mirror, and the head lying, face up, in its centre, both eyes fixed on his face. When the king’s gaze met its own, it suddenly flashed a merry smile. The smile made the king feel they had met before – though he couldn’t think where. In this instant of bewildered recognition, the dark man lifted the blue sword from behind his back and, with one clean stroke, brought it down on the king’s nape.

obsession with personal appearance. A classic case of overweening ego. Why are you worrying about clothes? You don’t even know how to live. First things first: when were you alive? Oh dear, I see I am not making myself understood…[Gives the matter fresh thought.] Let me put it this way – what kind of things were going on when you were alive? In your village? MAN: All sorts of things. Yesterday, for example, one of my sisters-in-law quarrelled with one of my grandmothers. ZHUANGZI: I was

quiet, so no one had paid any attention. Maybe he had told the old caretaker in the temple. In any case, only trips to town undertaken by people of consequence – by Messrs Zhao or Qian, or the local genius – were public events in Weizhuang. If even the exploits of the Fake Foreign Devil failed to count as newsworthy, then what claim did Ah-Q have on the village’s notice? Maybe that was why the old man had not broadcast the news, leaving the rest of Weizhuang society in the dark. Yet Ah-Q seemed

everyone else dispersing to their various tasks. When my sister-in-law returned in a little while to feed them some leftover rice, she heard the sound of splashing. Running over to investigate, she discovered the four ducklings having a bath in the pond: turning upside down, probably looking for food. By the time she had got them back on to dry land, the pond water was murky with silt. When at last it cleared again, only a few tendrils of lotus emerged into view. The tadpoles, and their new legs,

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