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Characteristics of the Works Published in “Xiaoya” Poetry Magazine

  • JOURNAL OF CHINESE STUDIES
  • 2019, (65), pp.93-121
  • DOI : 10.26585/chlab.2019..65.005
  • Publisher : CHINESE STUDIES INSTITUTE
  • Research Area : Humanities > Chinese Language and Literature
  • Received : July 31, 2019
  • Accepted : August 24, 2019
  • Published : September 30, 2019

Lee Kyung Ha 1

1서강대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

“Xiaoya” is a major poetry magazine that influenced the development of modern poetry in the 1930s. Total 186 creative poems, 15 translation poems, and 2 essays on poems have been published. In this paper, the expression of the true feelings of young youths is examined in three themes: (1) ‘Love and farewell of the youth’, (2) ‘desire to escape from reality’ through ‘drifter’ and ‘dream’, and (3) ‘sense of wasteland’ which young poets felt in times of despair and death. First, as the young poets were prominent, the works that sang the joy of love and the sadness of farewell are often noticeable in this magazine. The editor, Wu Benxing, has published 48 creative poems and two translation poems, so the poems of Wu Benxing on the theme of love and farewell can be easily found in “Xiaoya”. Second, it is easy to see works that used the motifs of “drifter” and “dream” as a way of escape from painful reality. Poets expressed theirs willingness to escape from reality and their hidden desires for reality through the images of ‘drifters’ and ‘dream’. Third, many works reflecting the ‘sense of wasteland’ under the influence of T. S. Eliot are also found. The ‘sense of wasteland’ here refers to “a modern concern for the tragic fate of all human beings and a critical consciousness of a real society filled with extreme absurdity or darkness”. And, ‘sense of wasteland’ also appeared as a variation of ‘death’ in a desperate age. The editor, Wu Benxing, struggled to publish a magazine because of the censorship of the newspaper’s newspaper censorship, but he did not end his strong love for publication. But “Xiaoya”, which was planned to be published the seventh “Special Edition” at that times, eventually disappeared into history due to the Sino-Japanese War. Poets in “Xiaoya” mostly portrayed the true inner world in implicit terms, however, they did rarely publish direct satire or criticism of reality. Therefore, through this analysis, we can examine the political tendencies and literary characteristics of ‘modern poetry’ poets in the 1930s before the Sino-Japanese War occurred. This can be considered as the significance of this paper.

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