Postcolonial literature about the South Seas, or Nanyang, examines the history of Chinese migration, localization, and interethnic exchange in Southeast Asia, where Sinophone settler cultures evolved independently by adapting to their "New World" and mingling with native cultures. Writing the South Seas explains why Nanyang encounters, neglected by most literary histories, should be considered crucial to the national literatures of China and Southeast Asia.
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Brian Bernards is assistant professor of East Asian languages and cultures at the University of Southern California. He is the coeditor of Sinophone Studies: A Critical Reader.Review:
"Bernards has written an important and fascinating book on the trope of the Nanyang, or South Seas, in modern Chinese and Southeast Asian literatures. He challenges traditional notions of canon formation and national literatures, and offers an engaging account of the hybrid cultural forms produced through the intercultural encounters of the Nanyang."―Emma Teng, author of Eurasian: Mixed Identities in the United States, China, and Hong Kong, 1842-1943
"Writing the South Seas is a most fascinating inquiry into the institutionalization and dissemination of overseas modern Chinese-language literature in Southeast Asia from the early modern era to the present day."―David Der-wei Wang, author of The Lyrical in Epic Time: Chinese Intellectuals and Artists Through the 1949 Crisis
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