Friday, August 17, 2007

Jin Yong replaces Lu Xun?

When the new semester begins on Sept. 1st, Beijing high school students will use a new edition of a Chinese textbook that formerly featured ancient Chinese prose and classic works by famous Chinese writers. Some of these stories have been deleted and replaced by contemporary Chinese literature, including kung fu novels. Jin Yong's "Flying Fox of Snowy Mountain" (金庸的《雪山飛狐》) will replace Lu Xun's "The True Story of Ah Q" (魯迅的《阿Q正傳》) and Zhu Ziqing's "Retreating figure" (朱自清的《背影》) appearing in textbooks. The news has caused an uproar on the BBS of major domestic websites. People are arguing whether Jin Yong's book should be used in high school and whether Jin Yong can replace Lu Xun.

According to a web site's research, 23.6% of people think that adding Jin Yong's novel in textbooks is good. 16.38% of people think that it is bad to do so. 60% of people thinks that both Jin Yong's novels and Lu Xin's novels are good. They can co-exist.

"Lu Xun's works account for a major part of Chinese textbooks; it's no big deal to replace some of them," Zou Shouyuan, a Chinese teacher from the Affiliated Middle and High School of the South China Normal University, remarked. "And indeed, we need Jin Yong's knight works to teach students the difference between right and wrong."

This is not the first time Jin Yong's novel appearing in high school literature textbooks. Part of "Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils" (《天龍八部》) is used in some China provinces' textbooks as well.

I don't know why people are against using Jin Yong's novels in textbooks. I would rather read Jin Yong's novels than boring old Chinese literature. I am not an avid reader. I have a couple of old Chinese literature sitting at home collecting dusts. As for Jin Yong's novels, I have the whole set and I have read all of them. Some of Jin Yong's novels are even thicker than those old Chinese literature! If the work is interesting, students will spend more time on it. They will do a better job at school. They might even want to read the rest of Jin Yong's novels at leisure time instead of playing video games or surfing web. Isn't this what teachers and parents always wanted? Want us to read more books?

Yahoo News HK
People (Chinese)
People (English)

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