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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A poetic meditation on existence : a study of three novels by Yu Hua Li, Hua


This research paper makes an overall analysis of Yu Hua's three novels: Crying Out in the Drizzle, To live and Xu Sanguan Sells his Blood in order to establish that Yu Hua's constant aim in his writing is to examine the existence of human beings marginalized in history. While not necessarily aiming at overt political criticism, Yu Hua's works seek to identify how individuals survive or fail to survive in Mao Zedong's China. This research paper begins with an examination of Yu Hua's early life, discuss how he started his writing career, reveal his attitude to writing and world view through a brief analysis of his early short stories as well as through a clarification of his involvement in the so-called "Avant-Garde School." I then concentrate on Yu Hua's three long novels: Crying out in the Drizzle, which is regarded as the climax of Yu Hua's experimental writing as well as a transitional work to his more traditional realistic writing style; To Live and Xu Sanguan Sells His Blood, the latter two works marking a successful change in his writing style. This thesis will then systematically examine the following aspects of these novels: plot structure, theme, vision, historical background, cultural implications, psychology, archetypal symbols, narrative technique and style.

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