The Resurrected Skeleton: An Interview

Wilt Idema’s new book traces a story and its transformations through hundreds of years of Chinese literature. The Resurrected Skeleton: From Zhuangzi to Lu Xun (Columbia University Press, 2014) collects and translates variations of the tale of Master Zhuang in his encounter with a skeleton who comes back to life and wreaks all sorts of havoc in the lives of those around him. (In some versions, Zhuang instead comes across a grieving widow and becomes enmeshed in series of misadventures upon trying to help her.) The chapters of the book introduce and present three texts from the seventeenth-century, two short ballads from the nineteenth century or later, and one modern story by Lu Xun, all adaptations and variations of the story of Zhuang and the skeleton. To listen to us talking about it for the New Books in EAS podcast, head over to this link!