Western Queers in China: Flight to the Land of Oz by D. E. Mungello

By D. E. Mungello

This particular paintings examines the function performed by means of sexuality within the ancient stumble upon among China and the West. exclusive historian D. E. Mungello focuses particularly on Western homosexuals who observed China as a spot of get away from the homophobia of Europe and North the USA. His groundbreaking examine strains the lives of 2 dozen males, many formerly unknown to have same-sex hope, who fled to China and within the approach stimulated perceptions of chinese language tradition to today. Their person tales surround flight from homophobia of their domestic international locations, the erotic charm of chinese language boy-actors, friendships with chinese language males, highbrow connections with the chinese language, and the reorientation of Western aesthetics towards China.

Mungello explores old attitudes and the ambience of oppression towards males with same-sex wish as he recounts the intensification of repression of queers in Europe and North the United States within the past due nineteenth-century. He indicates how China grew to become a spot of get away, a gay “land of oz.” the place males may flee from the closets in their minds. a few traveled to China and lived there; others immersed themselves in chinese language tradition at a distance. so much demonstrated long term friendships and acted as cultural intermediaries who opened the classy variety of Western tradition to a brand new experience of good looks and a clean resource of suggestion for poets, artists, and dramatists. Their “boys”—Chinese men whose prone have been to be had at competitively priced as messengers, rickshaw pullers, publications, chefs, entertainers, escorts, and prostitutes—were remodeled right into a common metaphor of chinese language tradition that lingers to at the present time. certainly, outdoor men’s variety of relationships, highbrow and actual, have had a profound impression in shaping the fashionable Western belief of China.

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