By Kang Liu
Even supposing chinese language Marxism—primarily represented through Maoism—is often noticeable via Western intellectuals as monolithic, Liu Kang argues that its practices and tasks are as various as these in Western Marxism, relatively within the zone of aesthetics. during this comparative research of eu and chinese language Marxist traditions, Liu finds the level to which chinese language Marxists contain rules approximately aesthetics and tradition of their theories and practices. In doing so, he constructs a unconditionally new knowing of chinese language Marxism.Far from being secondary concerns in chinese language Marxism, aesthetics and tradition are actually vital issues. during this recognize, such Marxists are just like their Western opposite numbers, even though Europeans have had little realizing of the chinese language adventure. Liu strains the family tree of aesthetic discourse in either glossy China and the West because the period of classical German concept, displaying the place conceptual adjustments and divergences have happened within the traditions. He examines the paintings of Mao Zedong, Lu Xun, Li Zehou, Qu Qiubai, and others in China, and from the West he discusses Kant, Schiller, Schopenhauer, and Marxist theorists together with Horkheimer, Adorno, Benjamin, and Marcuse. whereas stressing the range of Marxist positions inside of China in addition to within the West, Liu explains how principles of tradition and aesthetics have provided a optimistic imaginative and prescient for a postrevolutionary society and feature affected a large box of concerns regarding the issues of modernity.Forcefully argued and theoretically subtle, this e-book will attract scholars and students of latest Marxism, cultural reviews, aesthetics, and smooth chinese language tradition, politics, and beliefs.
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Additional info for Aesthetics and Marxism: Chinese Aesthetic Marxists and Their Western Contemporaries (Post-Contemporary Interventions)
Pro–Chiang Kai-shek liberalists encountered enormous hostility from the multitude of intellectuals who, at the time, were largely sympathetic to left-wing ideologies. The 1930s’ cultural arena was dominated by fierce ideological warfare between intellectuals themselves, only to be aggravated by the interference and manipulation of political factions on both the Right and Left. A serious casualty, in hindsight, was Cai’s enlightenment project. The Left-Right battle was exacerbated by the struggle between the Guomindang and ccp, and the Sino-Japanese War that happened intermittently.
47 This argument was presented in Wang’s celebrated study of Dream of Red Chamber. What distinguishes this as not only his magnum opus, but also a first in paradigmatic modern literary criticism in China, is Wang’s modernist interpretation. Wang’s study elucidates the affinities between Western postromantic, modernist sentiments and classical Chinese aesthetics that had fascinated modernist thinkers and poets, such as Karl Jaspers and Ezra Pound. In this classic Chinese novel, Wang saw a mutual illumination of the Schopenhauerian denial of desire and a tragic vision of life.
27 Confronted with the social reality of China, Liang’s evolutionist, reformist, and utopian ‘‘New Citizenry’’ program was politically untenable. Liang ultimately looked toward political and ideological conservatism against socialist revolution. Nevertheless, as aesthetics, modernity, and alternative modernity 15 Chang observes, Liang’s ‘‘popular image of citizenship . . ’’28 This ‘‘popular image of citizenship,’’ in turn, comes from Liang’s aesthetic ideas. ’’30 It can be said that Liang’s notion of modernity itself rests on a historical understanding of Western culture, in which aesthetics or fine arts are privileged over science: One who only has some rudimentary knowledge of the history of the West would know modern Western culture evolved from the Renaissance.
Aesthetics and Marxism: Chinese Aesthetic Marxists and Their Western Contemporaries (Post-Contemporary Interventions) by Kang Liu