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Modern Chinese Literature: The Exile Experience (ResMA)


Admission requirements

Admission to the MA Asian Studies (research) or another relevant Research MA. Students from other departments are kindly referred to the course description of the regular MA course.


Literature in exile and exile in literature are of all times and places. Chinese examples abound, from antiquity to the present day. What does an exile perspective – theoretical, literary-textual, sociological – tell us about modern Chinese literature and its social, political, and cultural contexts? Is this a ‘Chinese’ story, or is it universal?

Course objectives

  • familiarity with the broad contours of modern Chinese literature

  • in-depth understanding of the exile experience in this literature and at large

  • reflection on the above two points within an area studies framework

  • development of graduate-level academic skills such as reading and listening critically and analytically; formulating research questions; identifying, evaluating and organizing information; oral and written presentation; awareness of methodological, theoretical, and practical issues (in regard to this objective, ResMA students are expected to work toward a level that will enable the preparation of a PhD research project)


The timetable is available on the Asianstudies website

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar
    Attendance is compulsory for all sessions. Students must prepare well and contribute to in-class discussion. If a student cannot attend because of illness or misadventure, they should promptly inform the convener. Extra assignments may be set to make up for missed class time, at the convener’s discretion. Absence without notification may result in lower grades or exclusion from assessment components and a failing grade for the course.

Course Load

Total course load 10 EC x 28 hours = 280 hours

  • Contact hours Research MA: 6 hours

  • Class sessions (13 X 2 hrs) = 26 h

  • Preparation (13 x 8) = 104 h

  • Brief written work (three position papers) = 24 h

  • Oral presentations (two presentations) = 40 h

  • Term paper = 80 h

Assessment method


  • Three brief position papers (for ResMA students, these are 25% longer than for MA students)

  • Two oral presentations

  • One term paper (for ResMA students, this is 25% longer than for MA students)


  • Three brief position papers for a total of 30% of the final mark

  • Two oral presentations for a total of 30% of the final mark

  • One term paper for 40% of the total mark


In order to pass the course, students must obtain an overall mark of 5.50 (=6) or higher.

The course is an integrated whole. All assessment parts must be completed in the same academic year. No partial marks can be carried over into following years.

Exam Review

Students may request an oral elucidation of the assessment within 30 days after publication of the grade.


Blackboard will be used for:

  • Course material, as applicable

  • Uploading assignments

Note: there is no separate Blackboard page available for this ResMa course. Please subscribe to the Blackboard page of the regular MA course.

Reading list

The course material is available from the University Library (including a number of items on reserve), and from the World Wide Web. The MCLC Resource Center is an excellent website on modern Chinese literature ( Prior to the first class session, students should acquaint themselves with the MCLC literature bibliographies.
Research MA students are entitled to consultation with the convener outside class hours to discuss the identification and the use of possible additional readings.


Students are required to register through uSis. To avoid mistakes and problems, students are strongly advised to register in uSis through the activity number which can be found in the timetable in the column under the heading “Act.nbr.”. General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

Registration à la carte or contractonderwijs

A la carte nor contractonderwijs is possible for this course.


Prof. dr. Maghiel van Crevel


Students with disabilities

The university is committed to supporting and accommodating students with disabilities as stated in the university protocol (especially pages 3-5). Students should contact Fenestra Disability Centre at least four weeks before the start of their courses to ensure that all necessary academic accommodations can be made in time conform the abovementioned protocol.

Academic Integrity

Students are expected to be familiar with Leiden University policies on plagiarism and academic integrity. Plagiarism will not be tolerated. If you submit any work with your name affixed to it, it is assumed to be your own work with all sources used properly indicated and documented in the text (with quotations and/or citations).