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Featuring Chinese martial arts literature

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It's considered an annual cultural highlight, and now it's back for it's 27th year. The 2016 Hong Kong Book Fair has opened at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center. The theme of this year's event is "Wuxia" -- or Chinese martial arts, a genre of Chinese fiction about the adventures of martial artists in ancient China.

The 2016 Hong Kong Book Fair has opened at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center. 

Wuxia novels are fantasy works that generally take place in the martial arts world of "jianghu", a mythical bygone age of heroic wandering warriors, epic villains and lavish battles.

While the characters, historical settings, plots, and even physics vary from writer to writer, wuxia novels generally share a similar set of ideals about what makes the ideal Confucian gentleman: altruistic, just and disregard for riches among other values that are considered ideal for the traditional Chinese man.

Chinese martial arts literature has a history of more than 2000 years. The martial arts world portrayed in these novels embodies the essence of Chinese culture and is an important conduit for sharing and promoting Chinese culture.

This year's Hong Kong Book Fair opened on July 20th - a date which also marks 43 years since the death of world-renowned martial arts super-star, Bruce Lee. Lee's daughter Shannon spoke to CCTV NEWS earlier this year about her father's legacy.

The modern Wuxia novel thrived in Hong Kong during the 20th century. In the 1950s, Hong Kong was undergoing an incredible revitalization of literature and cinema, a period known as the Golden Age of wuxia, or martial arts fantasy. Many writers quickly rose to prominence on the tides of their action-packed fantasies.

Perhaps the most notable author of this era would be Jin Yong, who had many of his books adaptated into films and television series. His literature is known to be exceptionally rich in detail and complexity. And his novels are strongly tied to Chinese culture and philosophy.

Thanks to numerous film and television adaptations, the Wuxia genre is quite popular in China. For literature afficionado's, Wuxia novels are a gateway to another world.

These works have even been adapted into computer games and comics, popular not only in China but also around the world.

Directed by Ang Lee, "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon", won worldwide acclaim, including 4 OSCARS.

Even in today's China, Wuxia literature still has a very strong influence... It continues to inspire many blockbusters and kung fu movies, which in turn develops the audience's interest in the novels.

If you're interested in Chinese culture, then you will certainly find plenty of it in Wuxia.


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