Lena Henningsen's New Book Is Out Now!

Lena Henningsen’s new book is released now: Cultural Revolution Manuscripts: Unofficial Entertainment Fiction from 1970s China


It is finally here: Lena Henningsen’s new book on unofficial entertainment fiction from the Cultural Revolution! Cultural Revolution Manuscripts: Unofficial Entertainment Fiction from 1970s China is published with Palgrave Macmillan in their series on “Chinese Literature and Culture in the World”, the abstract follows:


This book investigates handwritten entertainment fiction (shouchaoben wenxue) which circulated clandestinely during the Chinese Cultural Revolution. Lena Henningsen’s analyses of exemplary stories and their variation across different manuscript copies brings to light the creativity of these readers-turned-copyists. Through copying, readers modified the stories and became secondary authors who reflected on the realities of the Cultural Revolution. Through an enquiry into actual reading practices as mapped in autobiographical accounts and into intertextual references within the stories, the book also positions manuscript fiction within the larger reading cosmos of the long 1970s. Henningsen analyzes the production, circulation and consumption of these texts, considering continuities across the alleged divide of the end of the Mao-era and the beginning of the reform period. The book further reveals how these texts achieved fruitful afterlives as re-published bestsellers or as adaptations into comic books or movies, continuing to shape the minds of their audience and the imaginations of the past.


Moreover, chapter five—on Cultural Revolution reading acts—is available open access (Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License)! Start reading directly here.


Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
Institut für Sinologie
Werthmannstraße 12
D-79098 Freiburg i. Br.

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