Brilliant and original, A Thousand Years of Good Prayers introduces a remarkable new writer whose breathtaking stories are set in China and among Chinese Americans in the United States. In this rich, astonishing collection, Yiyun Li illuminates how mythology, politics, history, and culture intersect with personality to create fate. From the bustling heart of Beijing, to a fast-food restaurant in Chicago, to the barren expanse of Inner Mongolia, A Thousand Years of Good Prayers reveals worlds both foreign and familiar, with heartbreaking honesty and in beautiful prose. “Immortality,” winner of The Paris Review’s Plimpton Prize for new writers, tells the story of a young man who bears a striking resemblance to a dictator and so finds a calling to immortality. In “The Princess of Nebraska,” a man and a woman who were both in love with a young actor in China meet again in America and try to reconcile the lost love with their new lives. “After a Life” illuminates the vagaries of marriage, parenthood, and gender, unfolding the story of a couple who keep a daughter hidden from the world. And in “A Thousand Years of Good Prayers,” in which a man visits America for the first time to see his recently divorced daughter, only to discover that all is not as it seems, Li boldly explores the effects of communism on language, faith, and an entire people, underlining transformation in its many meanings and incarnations. These and other daring stories form a mesmerizing tapestry of revelatory fiction by an unforgettable writer.
There has been an increasing recognition of the fluidity and ambiguity of ethnic identities within the context of global mobility. With that in mind, how have films constructed the identity of ethnic Chinese in the United States? This book addresses this issue through three sub-questions. First, why is the family narrative so characteristic of films about Chinese Americans in transnational Chinese cinema? In other words, how and why are images of Chinese or Chinese Americans in transnational Chinese cinema different from those in Hollywood movies? Second, how does transnational Chinese cinema define and negotiate the aesthetic conventions of melodrama commonly used to depict Chinese American families? In terms of establishing melodrama as an evolving mode of, how does Chinese American cinema historically connect with both Hollywood and Chinese cinema? Third, what have the narrative treatments of Chinese American families in transnational Chinese cinema contributed to the ongoing representation of Chinese culture and construction of ethnic Chinese identities in Western societies? This book traverses fields such as cultural studies, Chinese studies, media studies, American studies, and film studies, and engages with a select corpus of films from the 1990s to the 2000s, directed by Chinese American, Taiwanese and Hong Kong filmmakers and produced in the USA, Taiwan, Hong Kong and mainland China, to analyze the role the American Chinese family plays in their work. With sensitivity towards transnational bonds and historical processes, a negotiation process of three sets of conflicting forces has subsequently emerged: the traditional and the modern, the national and the transnational, and Chinese American identity crisis in favor of a Chinese identity or a true American identity. Contrasting cultural beliefs undoubtedly create cross-cultural and generational conflicts within the family, yet also open the way to negotiation and compromise. This research on the cinematic depiction of Chinese Americans reveals the historically significant transnational connection among Chinese American, Chinese, and American cultures. On the one hand, ethnic Chinese are represented by boundaries that establish and define the Chinese American community against other communities, and yet, on the other hand, the representation of family life and structure of Chinese immigrants is multiple and fluid, as culture itself is unstable and uncertain. Therefore, a process of fixation and a process of fluidity seem to take place at the same time.
Roger Ebert's Movie Yearbook 2010 is the ultimate source for movies, movie reviews, and much more. For nearly 25 years, Roger Ebert's annual collection has been recognized as the preeminent source for full-length critical movie reviews, and his 2010 yearbook does not disappoint. The yearbook includes every review Ebert has written from January 2007 to July 2009. It also includes interviews, essays, tributes, and all-new questions and answers from his Questions for the Movie Answer Man columns. Fans get a bonus feature, too, with new entries to Ebert's Little Movie Glossary. This is the must-have go-to guide for movie fanatics.
A Study Guide for Yiyun Li's "Immortality," excerpted from Gale's acclaimed Short Stories for Students. This concise study guide includes plot summary; character analysis; author biography; study questions; historical context; suggestions for further reading; and much more. For any literature project, trust Short Stories for Students for all of your research needs.
The American short story has always been characterized by exciting aesthetic innovations and an immense range of topics. This handbook offers students and researchers a comprehensive introduction to the multifaceted genre with a special focus on recent developments due to the rise of new media. Part I provides systematic overviews of significant contexts ranging from historical-political backgrounds, short story theories developed by writers, print and digital culture, to current theoretical approaches and canon formation. Part II consists of 35 paired readings of representative short stories by eminent authors, charting major steps in the evolution of the American short story from its beginnings as an art form in the early nineteenth century up to the digital age. The handbook examines historically, methodologically, and theoretically the coming together of the enduring narrative practice of compression and concision in American literature. It offers fresh and original readings relevant to studying the American short story and shows how the genre performs American culture.
This yearbook presents information on the dates, people, events, and world affairs of 2007. The section entitled "Britannica World Data," updated annually, presents geographic, demographic, and economic details.
Various ways of collecting, storing and recovering memories have been the focus of the most recent joint research project carried out by a group of Irish Studies scholars, all based in the Nordic countries and members of the Nordic Irish Studies Network (NISN). The result of the project, Recovering Memory: Irish Representations of Past and Present, is a collection of essays which examines the theme of memory in Irish literature and culture against the theoretical background of the philosophical discourse of modernity. Offering a wide range of perspectives, this volume examines a plurality of representations—past and present—of memory, both public and private, and the intersection between collective memory and individual in modern Ireland. Also explored is the relation between memory and identity—national and private—as well as questions of subjectivity and the construction of the self. Given Ireland’s tragic past and its long history of colonisation, it is inevitable that various aspects of memory in terms of nationality, post-colonialism, and politics also have bearing on this study. The volume is divided into five sections, each of which examines one broadly defined aspect of memory. The introductory section focuses on memory and history, and is followed by sections on memory and autobiography, place, identity, and memory in the work of novelist John Banville. Within each section, the individual writers engage in a fruitful dialogue with each other and with the approaches of such theorists as Arendt, Husserl, Merleau-Ponty, Ricoeur, and Baudrillard.