CLTA-GNY 2008 ANNUAL CONFERENCE
Li Bai and Du Fu: An Innovative Approach to Teaching Advanced Chinese
Professor of Chinese Language and Literature
This presentation introduces a new text book, Li Bai and Du Fu: A Reader of Advanced Chinese Language and Literature, which represents an innovative approach to teaching Chinese, featuring three combinations: those of classical and modern Chinese, language and literature, and poetry and prose.
This innovative approach is essentially a return to a Chinese tradition of poetry as a centerpiece of education and an underpinning of pedagogy. Students who study classical poetry learn a wide range of descriptive words that heighten students’ feel for the intricacies and complexities of the Chinese language. In order to provide students with the best examples of using poetic concepts of visualization, refinement, and cadence, this book concentrates on poems by Li Bai (701-62) and Du Fu (712-770), two of the brightest stars in China’s poetic galaxy. One distinct feature of this approach is its “dual texts” system: each poem is followed by a short essay of Analysis and Appreciation in modern Chinese, which discusses the poem’s linguistic, historical, literary, and philosophical aspects.
The participants will be introduced to this innovative approach which will deliver unique cognitive benefits, a sense of poetry, and a heightened feel for language. They will actively learn about the rationale of this approach and the techniques of teaching the course. They will also learn some effective methods of using this book such as memorization, recitation, dramatization and improvisation.
PowerPoint will be used to present sample chapters of the book, including poems, short essays of Analysis and Appreciation, and exercises.