Date of Award

Summer 7-18-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Eric C. White

Second Advisor

Faye Yuan Kleeman

Third Advisor

G. Andrew Stuckey


Shi Zhecun 施蟄存 (1905-2003), an avant-garde modernist writer in 1930s Shanghai, claimed that his works “were influenced [by Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)], while breaking away from the influence. ” That is to say, Freudian psychoanalysis was Sinicized (i.e. became influenced by Chinese thought or culture) in Shi Zhecun’s fiction writing. The discomposure caused by the vacillation between, and the entwinement of Chinese heritage and Western civilization was characteristic of the Chinese psyche in the 1930s, particularly in Shanghai, the most Westernized city. This thesis contributes to delving into the struggle between and the entanglement of Chinese tradition and Western influence in terms of the Sinicization of Freudian psychoanalysis. I argue that Shi Zhecun adopted Freudian thought to psychoanalyze the mindset of urban youth in 1930s Shanghai through the lens of psychical mechanisms and pathologies, and thereby, this practice of Sinicizing Freudian psychoanalysis was subtly characterized by using hesitation and entanglement. I will take a contextualizing approach to two stories: “A Rainy Evening” (1929), and “Devil’s Way” (1931), to demonstrate the Sinicization of Freudian psychoanalysis.