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March 15, 2012

Winter 2012 CCS Noon Lecture Series - Sophie Volpp


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Sophie Volpp
Associate Professor of Chinese and Comparative Literature,
University of California Berkeley

The Translucence of the Medium: Interiors and Interiority in the Eighteenth-century Novel Story of the Stone (红楼梦)

March 27, 2012
Tuesday 12 noon to 1:00 pm
Room 1636 School of Social Work Building
1080 South University

In this talk, Professor Volpp examines the novel Honglou meng's representation of new technologies of interior illumination and decoration such as plate glass windows, full-length mirrors, and perspectival painting. She asks how the capacity of such new technologies to encourage play upon perception within domestic interiors might have inspired innovative means of representing interiority. The novel's exploration of new technologies of illumination, reflection and perspective allow the reader to reconsider the materiality of a medium of representation. Ultimately, these technologies serve the novel's concern with encouraging in the reader an elevated quality of perception that leads to a new apprehension of the fictional.

Sophie Volpp is Associate Professor of Chinese and Comparative Literature at the University of California Berkeley. Her book Worldly Stage: Theatricality in Seventeenth-century China analyzed the influence of seventeenth-century theatrical culture on conceptions of spectatorship and performance, Her current book project, Substantive Fictions: Literary Texts and Material Culture in Late-imperial China, examines the representation of objects in seventeenth and eighteenth-century Chinese fiction in order to discuss the relation between seventeenth-century Chinese conceptions of the material and the fictional.

Posted by zzhu at March 15, 2012 05:32 PM