“Environmental World Literature or Cinema” entails border crossing, a much debated issue in today’s ecocritical studies. This chapter examines the trans-border forces in the novel Wolf Totem and its adapted film, both being widely circulated and discussed in the world market. What is the nature of these forces? What impacts do they have both on the environment and on the characters portrayed? In what way do they play a transcending or transgressive role? Further still, what cultural, political, ethic, and aesthetic implications do these forces have in regard to environmental protection and ecological sustainability? To answer these questions, I explore the following three aspects in Wolf Totem: (1) the ethics of practices of boundary-crossing; (2) cultural-political symbolizations of nature; and (3) paradoxes of cinematic representation. By examining the ambiguous trans-border moves in this novel and its film adaptation, as well as in their production and consumption, I argue, in the transcultural flux that features Wolf Totem as a work of world ecoliterature and ecocinema (which is also symptomatic of many other eco-productions), that transcendence and transgression usually form a dialectical relationship, which constitutes the cultural-political complexity in configuring environmental world literature and cinema.
|Title of host publication||Ecology and Chinese-Language Cinema: Reimagining a Field|
|Editors||Sheldon H. LAU, Haomin GONG|
|Number of pages||25|
|Publication status||Published - 29 Oct 2019|
|Name||Routledge Contemporary China Series|
GONG, H. (2019). Transcendence and Transgression: Reading Wolf Totem as Environmental World Literature/Cinema? In S. H. LAU, & H. GONG (Eds.), Ecology and Chinese-Language Cinema: Reimagining a Field (Routledge Contemporary China Series). Routledge.