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Date 2021-03-18


Historical Authentication of Cross-Cultural Interchange: A Study of Establishment of American’s Representation in Chen Ying-Zhen’s and Huang Chun-Ming’s novels


Chen, Cheng-Fan

Assistant Professor, Department of Chinese Languages & Literature, National Chi-Nan University


The focus of the Americans is often found in the literary work in 1960s and 1970s about the representation of exotic culture. Two dimensions worth further discussion. Firstly, most of writers show great concern towards American soldiers, bars and prostitutes. Secondly, among the works in 1960s and 1970s, most are composed by Chen Ying-Zhen and Huang Chun-Ming; Chen’s and Huang’s works attract most attentions. Taking these two dimensions into account, this paper therefore aims to research the collective imagination and generated stereotypes of the American, particularly about American soldiers, bar and prostitutes in those novels.

The positive image representation of the American no longer could be explained comprehensively from the Taiwanese people’s slavish mentality or new colonialism of America to Taiwan. Hence, I had to rethink how these novelists’ subjective positions were established to observe such lives. We then might realize how the novelists absorbed the social reactions and anxiety brought by the foreigner in Taiwan. People no longer considered the image of American being associated with the popular culture of getting rid of poverty and anxiety of the intellectual when living in the political circumstance at that time. By doing so, such thoughts naturally became the literary mainstream of modernism and local realism in Taiwan.

While we read through novels of Chen and Huang, we were able to elaborate concepts of the novelists’ subjective cognition. Moreover, we could understand that the creation of the image of the American mainly transmitted the idea of how people criticize and reflect the Taiwanese cultural subjectivity under the reign of political martial law.

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Bulletin of Taiwanese Literature