Questions for "One Evening in the Rainy Season"
Some discussion questions for “One Evening in the Rainy Season”:
1. What is the role of the Shanghai-specific landmarks in the story? What about the overlapping female images? Did the author’s surrealist efforts leave space for a realistic reading of the story?
2. How does the story mark time and space? How is the past constructed through the present? And how is the countryside imagined through the city?
3. How do gazes and returned gazes function in the story? As instances of (mis)communication? And as moments of psychological transferences?
4. What kinds of transactions occurred in the story? How are they different from other transactions took place in previous texts in general, and in “Young Master Gets his Tonic” in particular?
5. How do you read the image of the first-person male narrator walking in the rain on the city streets? Is it possible to read it together with the first-person narrator in “Young Master Gets His Tonic”?
6. Finally, a link to Joris Ivens’ 1929 documentary Rain (with music by Hanns Eisler, 1941) as a contemporary reference to the worldwide “poetic” avant-garde: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyTO0Q5HYak&feature=related
And a related question: can the category of class be of any relevance to these “poetic” texts about rain?
Enjoy the rest of the weekend and see you Monday,