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Implications in the Narrative of Laoshe’s “ZhuaYao(抓藥)”

  • JOURNAL OF CHINESE STUDIES
  • 2019, (66), pp.79-97
  • DOI : 10.26585/chlab.2019..66.004
  • Publisher : CHINESE STUDIES INSTITUTE
  • Research Area : Humanities > Chinese Language and Literature
  • Received : October 31, 2019
  • Accepted : November 28, 2019
  • Published : December 31, 2019

Sujin Kim 1

1성신여자대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Most of Laoshe’s works have consistently received high praise and popular popularity in terms of completeness and artistry. In this paper, I tried to re-examine the meaning and significance of the works revealed in the narrative of Laoshe’s novel Zhuyao (抓藥: Buying Chinese medicine), which had not been noticed because of his low evaluation. The plain and sincere writer Luyin and the stern peasant Ertou suffer tragedy because of the red cover book. Their tragedy was nothing but ordinary comedy for a critic whose name was Qingyan with no professional ethics. The climax of the novel’s tragedy lies at this point. Luyin’s intentions were good when he wrote a book for good and simple farmers, including Ertou. Ironically, however, it did not deliver medicine to the sick father in time. After all, in the tragedy of his father’s death, Ertou blames him, contrary to Luyin’s intentions. Ertou’s relationship with Luyin, which should be in solidarity, creates a clear boundary that cannot be surpassed by Ertou, who regarded Luyin as the object of his life’s resentment. Critic Qingyan is portrayed in the work as a figure who is always innocent. However, he is a Immoral person, with only a little bit of sorry for the tragedy of others caused by his carelessness. His image reflects Laoshe’s view of the left critics of the time. Will Luyin be in jail without sin and out of prison? The novel ends with an open ending, leaving room for Qingyan to save him. It can be assumed that Lapshe’s own image is projected to Luyin, and that leftist critics are projected to Qingyan. That is to say, Laoshe had a hopeful desire for leftist critics at the time.

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