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Title: The aesthetic thought of Zhu Guangqian (1897-1986)
Author: Shim, Tae-Shik
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2008
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In modern Chinese aesthetics and literary criticism, Zhu Guangqian (1897-1986) is one of the most well-known theorists. At the same time, he is a writer renowned amongst intellectuals in China whose readable versions of his theory are enjoyed by a large number of young readers. In the 1980s, Zhu drew attention again as an influential figure through the debates over socialist alienation in Marxist humanism and “Culture Fever”. This was due not only to Zhu’s emphasis on subjectivity in Marxist theory in his late phase but also to his fundamental question of how to retain the existential integration between human nature and the world. His emphasis on the aesthetic dimension of art was at odds with prevailing contemporary views on political utility in art. In consequence, the literary theory and aesthetics of his early stage were, until the 1980s, criticised in mainland China for their idealist tendencies. Although there have been some studies on Zhu’s contributions to modern Chinese aesthetic theory and literary criticism, there has been no contemporary study of the formation and development of his thought. This thesis is, therefore, concerned to provide a detailed reconstruction and analysis of these relatively neglected aspects of Zhu’s thought throughout his life. I seek to show that Zhu offers a unique attitude towards the intellectual turmoil of Chinese ethical ideals and Western thinking derived from his education in both China and Europe and developed throughout his further studies of Western thinkers such as Bernardo Croce, Karl Marx and Giambattista Vico.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available