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He forged a friendship with an American medical missionary, Peter Parker in the 1830s and painted a series of portraits of Parker's notable Chinese patients who often had dramatic or shocking conditions.I was interested in Lam Qua, Parker and the paintings as figures of the confluence of East and West and lessons in the limits of orientalism and I turned to Buck as another of these figures who, as the American-born daughter of missionaries, immersed herself in Chinese culture at a depth that was more intense than many others of that era.
The paper ends with brief discussion of Dragon Seed, and what in my view is the endpoint of Buck's transcultural political imaginary. The Rehabilitation of Pearl Buck A shift in China's official attitude toward Pearl Buck occurred in May 2012 at Nanjing University during an international symposium on her years in Nanjing.In reworking this picture of global literary culture, this essay argues that Buck's literary/cultural importance was never exclusively textual (based on the intrinsic literary qualities of her works in a critical vacuum).Rather, it demands historicist and biographical contextualization in order to elucidate the ideological horizons, as Frederic Jameson might put it, intrinsic to her work.The Good Earth, Dragon Seed) and for being the first American woman to win the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1938.When I started, I saw this work as a continuation of a study I had done some years ago of a nineteenth-century Cantonese artist known as Lam Qua (Guan Qiaochang) who painted in a Western manner.
The first part will take a macroscopic vantage, tracing the rise and fall and re-emergence of Buck's literary reputation.