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The (Auto)biography of a Madman: Ambivalence and Ambiguity in Zhang Yang's Quitting

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Quitting is essentially a biography of a madman. this article will take a closer look at quitting and will find that Jia Hongsheng and the Madman share a poignant criticism on the traditions they are to inherit. Although the Madman is more relentless condemning thousands of years of Chinese civilization as cannibalistic, the quest of Jia Hongsheng is more complex and more profound in that he not only challenges the fatherly tradition of peasant culture, but that he questions the significance of life in itself. Unlike the Madman who goes back to normal, Jia seems rather ambiguous and not quite "cured."
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Keywords: Jia Hongsheng; Lu Xun; Madman; Quitting; prodigal son; truth

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2008

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  • Asian Cinema is a seminal journal, which has been published since 1995 by the Asian Cinema Studies Society under the stewardship of Professor John Lent. From 2012 Asian Cinema will be published by Intellect as part of our Film Studies journal portfolio. The journal currently publishes a variety of scholarly material - including research articles, interviews, book and film reviews and bibliographies - on all forms and aspects of Asian cinema. The journal's broad aim is to advance understanding and knowledge of the rich traditions of the various Asian cinemas, thereby making an invaluable contribution to the field of Film Studies in general.
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