An “extended palimpsest and, at the same time, a transcoding into a different set of conventions” (Hutcheon 2006, 33), adaptation is a “transgeneric practice” (Genette 1993, 395) of cultural relocation which guarantees an “afterlife” to the source text – often a classic – bringing it “into greater proximity to the cultural and temporal context of the readers or audiences” (Sanders 2015). Since its first appearance in 1921, Lu Xun’s novella "The True Story of Ah Q has been rewritten and intersemiotically translated, both in China and abroad, through a practice of “dramatisation” (Genette 1997, 278). Lu Xun himself, although admittedly skeptical about the adaptations of his work for the stage or the screen, actually paved the way for them, when claiming that “even considering it only as a source book, the spoken parts can be adpated to the local dialect, not only the language but also the setting and the name of the characters can be changed in order to make them feel more realistic for the audience” (Lu Xun 1934). According to Foster “Ah Q progeny works from the second half of the 20th century demonstrate that the re-performances […] can both embrace Lu Xun’s critique and expand it in new directions” (2006, 83). My paper focuses on the adaptations of The True Story of Ah Q by two important European playwrights, Christoph Hein (b. 1944) and Dario Fo (1926-2016), who “translated” Lu Xun’s famous character respectively into a problematic anarchist (“Die wahre Geschichte des Ah Q”, 1983) and a Chinese revolutionary Harlequin (“La storia di Qu”, 2011). These two plays appropriate the “hypotext” into a new cultural geography, which is neither Chinese nor completely German or Italian, but rather a transcultural space based on the European intellectual tradition of the “idiot savant”.

Ah Q travels to Europe: Christoph Hein’s Die wahre Geschichte des Ah Q (1983) and Dario Fo’s La storia di Qu (2011)

N. Pesaro
2020

Abstract

An “extended palimpsest and, at the same time, a transcoding into a different set of conventions” (Hutcheon 2006, 33), adaptation is a “transgeneric practice” (Genette 1993, 395) of cultural relocation which guarantees an “afterlife” to the source text – often a classic – bringing it “into greater proximity to the cultural and temporal context of the readers or audiences” (Sanders 2015). Since its first appearance in 1921, Lu Xun’s novella "The True Story of Ah Q has been rewritten and intersemiotically translated, both in China and abroad, through a practice of “dramatisation” (Genette 1997, 278). Lu Xun himself, although admittedly skeptical about the adaptations of his work for the stage or the screen, actually paved the way for them, when claiming that “even considering it only as a source book, the spoken parts can be adpated to the local dialect, not only the language but also the setting and the name of the characters can be changed in order to make them feel more realistic for the audience” (Lu Xun 1934). According to Foster “Ah Q progeny works from the second half of the 20th century demonstrate that the re-performances […] can both embrace Lu Xun’s critique and expand it in new directions” (2006, 83). My paper focuses on the adaptations of The True Story of Ah Q by two important European playwrights, Christoph Hein (b. 1944) and Dario Fo (1926-2016), who “translated” Lu Xun’s famous character respectively into a problematic anarchist (“Die wahre Geschichte des Ah Q”, 1983) and a Chinese revolutionary Harlequin (“La storia di Qu”, 2011). These two plays appropriate the “hypotext” into a new cultural geography, which is neither Chinese nor completely German or Italian, but rather a transcultural space based on the European intellectual tradition of the “idiot savant”.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10278/3725829
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