On December 8th, 2023, students of Chinese Literature study programme from batch 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023 obtained a memorable experience with the guest lecture about the study of a classical Chinese literature, 红楼梦 (Hongloumeng) atau “Dream of the Red Chamber”. The head of the guest lecture is one of the lecturers in the Chinese Literature study programme, Diah Ayu Wulan, M.Pd., and the guest lecturer delivering the class itself is Professor Chia Jee Luen. This guest lecture is held fully in Mandarin, apart from some of the questions asked in Indonesian.

The guest lecture started with a greeting from the Vice Dean for Academics, Sahiruddin, M.A., Ph.D., and led by MC Shofie Shafa Sabia Zacharias and also Akhmad Naufal as moderator.

In this guest lecture, Professor Chia Jee Luen explained to the attendees regarding the novel, “Dream of the Red Chamber” with a PowerPoint, where he gave a detailed explanation regarding the novel itself, misconceptions about the work that was named as one of the Classic Chinese Novels, until the contents, characterization, and also the latent messages included within. He pinpointed a misconception that the novel was written by only one person, while in actuality, there were multiple people that contributed to the writing of this work.

Other than that, Professor Chia Jee Luen also compared the publication of the novel between Indonesia and Malaysia. Professor Chia found out that the publication of this book is slightly better in Indonesia, because the Chinese literature publication in Indonesia started earlier than in Malaysia. He also discovered that the “Dream of the Red Chamber” in Indonesia had a more diverse adaptation in terms of the novel’s publication, and there had even been a graphic novel published while there hasn’t been any in Malaysia.

Professor Chia smoothly delivered his lecture, and he even made jokes and had an active interaction with the students. Before he ended his presentation, Professor Chia encouraged the participants to continue and deepen their studies regarding the “Dream of the Red Chamber” novel studies. He wished that in the future, the students participating in the guest lecture will show up in scientific publications studying the novel, or participating with the professor to study this topic. Professor Chia Jee Luen also answered a few questions from the students participating in the guest lecture that piqued his interest.

With the knowledge gained from Professor Chia Jee Luen’s guest lecture, the students of Chinese Literature Universitas Brawijaya, obtained a solid foundation to appreciate the richness and details in the literary works in China, and also were inspired in their future study path. This opens a new research path for students of the Chinese Literature study program. (Pryandhika Garesyah Faustha)