A multicultural approach to Chinese language and literature, joint conference with Peking University


A great opportunity to exchange knowledge and new ideas about Chinese language and literature, and to create a common ground for Chinese studies in Europe and Japan: the second conference organized by both Peking University (PKU) and the Department of Asian and North African Studies of Ca’ Foscari University of Venice was held on October 14-15, 2016, at the Department of Chinese Language and Literature of Peking University (commonly known in China as Beida).

The conference, which was given the title Humanities, different traditions and Methodologies: Multicultural Perspectives in Chinese Language and Literature, consisted of six panel sessions, each discussing different aspects in this field of research: from literary narrative to linguistics, from translation to the interpretation of modern and contemporary Chinese literature.

The ceremony opened with a welcome from the organizers, Vice President Li Yansong (Peking University) and Vice Rector Tiziana Lippiello (Ca’ Foscari University of Venice) Prof. Chen Xiaoming, Chair of the PKU Chinese Department, prof. Zhang Hui, Vice chair of the PKU Chinese Department and the First Secretary of the Italian Embassy in Beijing, dr. Pierluigi Colapinto.
Taking part in the debate were professors from several prestigious universities in China and Europe, including Suzhou University (China), Gakuin University (Japan), Lund University (Sweden), Charles University Prague (Czech Republic), and the Italian universities La Sapienza (Rome), Statale (Milan) and Bicocca (Milan).

The first conference of this kind organized by the two institutions  was held in Venice in March 2013 and resulted in the publication of a collection of essays by Edizioni Ca’ Foscari, entitled Linking Ancient and Contemporary: Continuities and Discontinuities in Chinese Literature, which is currently available as an open access ebook.
The volume reflects the desire to compare and combine different approaches to Chinese literature and to show how, throughout the ages, traditional intellectual and literary values have been repeatedly criticized and rejected, yet have resurfaced and been reinterpreted in many different ways.