The Crazed

The Crazed

Book - 2002
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"In his new novel, the author of Waiting deepens his portrait of contemporary Chinese society while exploring the perennial conflicts between convention and individualism, integrity and pragmatism, loyalty and betrayal. Professor Yang, a respected teacher of literature at a provincial university, has had a stroke, and his student Jian Wan - who is also engaged to Yang's daughter - has been assigned to care for him. What at at first seems a simple if burdensome duty becomes treacherous when the professor begins to rave: pleading with invisible tormentors, denouncing his family, his colleagues, and a system in which a scholar is "just a piece of meat on a cutting board."" "Are these just manifestations of illness, or is Yang spewing up the truth? And can the dutiful Jian avoid being irretrievably compromised?"--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Publisher: New York : Pantheon Books, c2002.
Edition: 1st ed. --
ISBN: 9780375421815
Branch Call Number: FIC Jin af 33164001931547 F 3600 FIC cpy 1 AURORA
Characteristics: 323 p.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
RogerDeBlanck Jun 30, 2018

The title of Ha Jin’s third novel could be turned into a question. Who are the crazed? At some level, they include the entire Chinese system that views the human species as a stock of puppets. In a country like China, each person struggles with his/her decisions and choices, where an inner yearning to pursue the full extent of one’s individualism can land you under state suspicion. In The Crazed, Jin examines the plight of the Chinese people up to the point of Tienanmen Square. He shows how one’s subconscious longings lie hidden under the pain of detection. They remain unvoiced and inactive due to the fear of censure at the hands of the government, which has a singular intent to direct the fate of every citizen's mind. Jin brings all the forces of China’s history into clear focus, and he shows the contemporary predicament Chinese citizens face under a repressive government. He has the shrewd ability to take the struggles of the people in his home country and make their suffering real on a universal level.

Sep 06, 2012

Fascinating look into the Chinese society just before and during the Tiananmen Square student uprising. The novel unfolds through eyes of a dying professor's lost mind, then takes a momentum through the lives of people close to him. The most fascinating part of the book for me was the visit into the poorest parts of Chinese countryside, wow! Very well done evolution of the narrator.


Add a Summary
Harriet_the_Spy Mar 11, 2013

Jian is a literature graduate student who finds himself, in the spring of 1989, caring for his professor who has just had a stroke. As student unrest spreads through the country, Jian remains apolitical and focused on his exams and his professor's health. Gradually, through his professor's crazed murmurings, he comes to understand that things are not as they seem, and that politics infuses every part of life. Forced to go into the countryside for the first time in his life, he confronts the reality of rural poverty and official corruption. Eventually caught up in the student uprisings himself, he realizes his life is changed forever.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at APL

To Top