Homosexuality in china

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Stephen Cresswell Dr. K. McGovern English 102 7 May 2006 The Bridegroom A collection of 12 short stories about life in Muji City in contemporary China, The Bridegroom illuminates the trials and tribulations of men and women forced to live in a controlled society and how their many daily rebellions, both large and small, help them cope and sometimes even triumph. Three of the short stories were selected for inclusion in The Best American Short Stories. In the title story, a man who appears to be the perfect husband joins a secret men's literary club and finds himself arrested for homosexuality. In the story "Alive" an official loses his memory in an earthquake and then lives happily as a simple worker only to suddenly remember who he really is. He tries to return to his old life finding that nothing is the same- most especially himself- and no one accepts him. "A Tiger-Fighter Is Hard to Find," is about a television crew's botched attempt to film a fight scene with a live Siberian tiger that sends their lead actor into a mental hospital because he becomes convinced that he is the mythical tiger-fighter Wu Song. The author, Ha Jin, reveals human “truths” through somewhat absurd circumstances and makes the reader think. The people of Muji City are affected by great cultural and economic change. The Communist system under which most of the characters grew up is still in place, but Capitalism is also emerging and beginning to take hold. People feel the great pressure of maintaining traditions while feeling their “freedom.” The world of Chairman Mao, with its rigid order and rules and no tolerance for individuality or freedom, takes its toll on people. In many strange ways each of the folk tales in The Bridegroom shows how the Communist system has actually “created” the people who live within it. They are molded by their conflict of working within the
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