Fragmented Encounters, Social Slippages: Lin Huiyin's "In Ninety-Degree Heat"


  • Carles Prado-Fonts Universitat Oberta de Catalunya

Paraules clau:

1930s, China, Chinese literature, modernism, Lin Huiyin, liuxiesheng, discourses of representation, otherness, social class


The article reads Lin Huiyin's short story "In Ninety-Nine Degree Heat" (1934) in relation to the context of 1930s China, as an innovative work which combines elements from both the Chinese and the Western traditions, and as a text which informs readers not only of the problematic of class and gender issues in 1930s Chinese society but also of the context of the liuxuesheng who returns to China -Like Lin Huiyin herself. Focusing on questions like otherness, representation, and encounters, the essay analyzes how the episodic narrative structure of Lin's short story echoes social and representational discourses in post-May Fourth China, at the same time that it explores issues such as social inequality, otherness and alienation, which were crucial to the liuxuesheng, and which reflect Lin's own experience as a returned and alienated liuxuesheng at the time.