Any recommendations for modern Chinese or Taiwanese literature (preferably from 1900 onward)?
I looked for a Chinese /lit/ chart, but couldn't find one.
I've read Ha Jin's Ocean of Words and enjoyed it quite a bit, but I guess I consider his work to be more Western in style.
Thanks in advance.
last one I have,in case you're interested in japanese lit too
"Four great classics" is a misleading title.
Let's be clear: in Chinese scholarship the "classics" refer to the most culturally significant works of Chinese civilisation, which are the "Four Books and Five Classics" or 四书五经. These texts, in their most accessible translations, may not really be of much interest (nor very readable) to the dilettante.
The "four great classics" should be called the four great novels or four great classical novels, sometimes with a fifth, 金瓶梅, included amongst their ranks.
oh cool you actually read them.
so i think the issue with gu long is that his works are simply horribly inconsistent. it's well documented that between bouts of depression and alcoholism and tons of ghost writing, many of his works were simply not fleshed out, or were simply written for the sake of writing. you can easily tell by how many of his books start with an immersive story and mystery but ends up going nowhere and how often characters disappear and reappear as he forgets/remembers about them.
i think it's fine that his heroes are edgier, and it's often refreshing to not have to sit through the grow up -> find secret wushu manual -> get super fortuitous experiences that make you OP -> etc. plotline, but it's a shtick that gets old after a while imo.
did you read them in chinese or english? jin yong's prose is much better as well, which probably doesn't come across in english.
gu long also wrote wu lin wai shi, which had possibly the worst character i have ever come across in all of fiction (the girl holy fuck she was annoying)
desu gu long reminds me a lot of a web novel author, who writes things as they spring up with very little planning and revision, with the end result of a lot of stories that don't go anywhere and inconsistent characters.
I also think Jin Yong, far more than Gu Long or anyone else really, managed to capture exactly the kind of values and virtues and beliefs that Chinese society as a whole holds. There's a reason why Jin Yong's characters and stories are so incredibly well-known in China, even to those who have never read any of his works. It's a level of influence that I think is unmatched by, really, any comparable author in the west. Beyond "pop culture", Jin Yong manages to reach his level of influence precisely because of how well he portrayed how Chinese people view society and their place within it.
I read them in Chinese, and yeah Jin Yong's prose is nice but I like Gu Long's more for some reason. I think it's cos I started Gu Long with 小李飞刀 and the intro just stuck with me.
I think the reason I like Gu Long is his plot is more like a detective novel. But yeah my favorite wuxia has to be the condor heroes series followed by the Deer Duke. Dat