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Notes of a Desolate Man

by Howard Goldblatt

  • ISBN: 9780231116084
  • ISBN10: 023111608X

Notes of a Desolate Man

by Howard Goldblatt

  • List Price: $85.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Columbia Univ Pr
  • Publish date: 06/01/1999
  • ISBN: 9780231116084
  • ISBN10: 023111608X
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Description: Regarded by critics on both sides of the Taiwan Straits as one of the most accomplished writers in contemporary Chinese literature, Chu T'ien-wen has produced an award-winning array of novels, short stories, memoirs, and screenplays. With this translation of "Notes Of A Desolate Man," her work is at last available to English-speaking readers.

The novel's title is an allusion to Dostoevsky, and the narrator, Xiao Shao, frequently alludes to and quotes Western intellectuals -- Levi-Strauss, Foucault, Goethe, Montaigne, Schopenhauer, and others -- and Western films and art. The death of a lover from AIDS serves as the primary catalyst for the narrator's extended reflections on mortality, solitude, and desolation, which form the core of this elegiac novel. This core is overlaid with often-humorous accounts of Xiao Shao's relationships, almost-polemical discussions of the international gay rights movement, detailed and metaphorical descriptions of sexual and sensuous experiences, and philosophical reflections on "foreign" culture. The idea of marginality is explored through the narrator's experiences as a homosexual, which reflect the novelist's own feelings as a second-generation Mainlander living in Taiwan.

"Notes Of A Desolate Man" will appeal not only to readers of fiction, especially gay literature, but also to anyone interested in Taiwanese identity in the shadow of greater China or by the impact of Westernization.

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Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 184 p. Modern Chinese Literature from Taiwan.
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Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 184 p. Modern Chinese Literature from Taiwan.
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