Skip to main content
Hongjian Wang

Hongjian Wang

Associate Professor // Chinese // SLC

Affiliated Faculty // Film and Video Production // Rueff School

Associate Professor // Comparative Literature // SLC

Associate Professor // Asian Studies // SLC

Associate Professor // SLC

Associate Professor // SIS

Research focus:
Chinese and Comparative Literature

Office and Contact

Room: SC G022


Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, University of California, Riverside, 2012



Hongjian Wang is a literary comparatist and cultural historian by training. Her research interest includes modern and contemporary Chinese literature, film, performing arts, and cultural history, with a focus on the ever-changing dynamics among the state, the cultural elite, and the populace. Her monograph, Decadence in Twentieth-Century Chinese Literature and Culture: A Comparative and Literary-Historical Reevaluation, uses the original notions of late-nineteenth-century European Decadence as a critical lens to re-examine twentieth-century Chinese literature and to illuminate the changing status of China’s modern cultural elite. Her current book project, The Laughter of the Others: Satiric Skits on the CCTV Spring Festival Gala and China’s Postsocialist Condition, examines the comic portrayal of various types of Others—occupational, sexual, age, regional, ethnic, or racial—in the Spring Festival Gala on China’s Central Television to shed light on the evolving social values and cultural dynamics in contemporary China.

Personal Website:

Selected publications:


Decadence in Modern Chinese Literature and Culture: A Comparative and Literary-Historical Reevaluation. Amherst, NY: Cambria Press, 2020. 


From Court Fools to Stage Puppets: Country Bumpkins in the Skits on CCTV’s Spring Festival Gala (1983–2022).” China Quarterly vol. 250, 2022, pp. 552–571. 

Theatre of ‘Disbelief’: Meng Jinghui’s Cynical Metatheatre in Contemporary China.” Asian Theater Journal, vol. 37, no. 2, 2020, pp. 376–397. 

A Chinese Ghost Story: A Hong Kong Comedy Film’s Cult Following in Mainland China.” Journal of Chinese Cinemas, vol. 12, no. 2, 2018, pp. 142–157.   

“Documenting through Reenacting: Revisiting the Performative Mode in Chinese Independent Documentaries.” Filming the Everyday: Independent Documentaries in Twenty-First-Century China, edited by Paul Pickowicz and Yingjin Zhang, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2016. pp. 153–165.  

Pillar of the Nation: Photographic Representation of ‘Modern’ Chinese Masculinity in the Liangyou Pictorial.” Liangyou, Kaleidoscopic Modernity and the Shanghai Global Metropolis, 1926-1945, edited by Paul Pickowicz, Kuiyi Shen and Yingjin Zhang, Brill Academic Publishers, 2013, pp.161–178.  


Review of The Evolution of the Chinese Internet: Creative Visibility in the Digital Public, by Shaohua Guo (Stanford University Press, 2020).” Journal of Asian Studies, vol. 81, no. 1, 2022, 167–168.