Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Lu Xun: Evolution

References to Evolution & Darwinism in Xun

In The Diary of a Madman, Xun is probably influenced by the theories of evolution put forth by Darwin & Huxley. For instance in chapter 4 Xun writes, “After I’d taken a few bites, the meat felt so smooth and slippery in my mouth that I couldn’t tell whether it was fish or human flesh. I vomited.” This could point to an understanding that we, as humans, had evolved from our days of all creatures living in the sea and being of the same flesh. Which is this case would make fish flesh and human flesh almost identical. I believe that Xun also believes human beings must undergo some changes in our perception of the way we eat meat in most cases as we have much in common with the animal world around us so that eating animal meat would have similar repercussions as if we were cannibals and eating human flesh.

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