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Transnational Scriptworlds

image of Journal of World Literature

The essays collected in this special issue think about literature through the prism of script. The emphasis is primarily on the cultural sphere inscribed by Chinese characters, or the “Chinese Scriptworld” (漢字文化圈)—China, Korea, Japan and Vietnam. All of the countries in this “scriptworld” use, or have used, Chinese characters for writing though each has its own distinct language(s). By examining the interrelations between writing, speech, thought and culture in and outside this region, the special issue investigates the significance of script and builds a case for the scriptworld as a useful analytical unit for world literature. A more complete study of world literatures, as classified by script, will bring a dimension that is currently missing from world literary theories of translation and circulation.

Affiliations: 1: Oxford University


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