Winner of the Mao Dun Literature Prize.
From one of China’s most celebrated authors comes a masterful novel about modernity and tradition, love and obsession, and economic change and quixotic dreams—all set against the backdrop of a rapidly urbanizing China.
In post–Cultural Revolution China, in the fading village of Freshwind, the fates of two households are shifting.
The Bais, once the most powerful family in the region, have fallen from status. Their beautiful daughter, Snow Bai, an embodiment of tradition, pursues a career in a vanishing art form. The Xias, enthusiastic members of the Party, are on the rise. Their favorite son, Wind Xia, is a citified politician whose marriage to Snow Bai could unite the two families. But in a village casting about for a new road to prosperity, fortunes can change. Watching it all unfold is a local outcast named Spark. The inveterate busybody is given to strange visions and flights of fancy, and is motivated by the only constant in Freshwind: his mad love for Snow Bai.
Expansive, funny, monumental, and deeply poignant, Jia Pingwa’s The Shaanxi Opera is a keenly observant portrait of China in an era of globalization, societal upheaval, and the growing influence of popular culture.
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Unabridged 34 hours