There is generally considered to be Four Great Classical Novels in the history of Chinese literature. Of the four, “Journey to the West” is by far the most culturally accessible, for its fantastical imagery of heaven and earth transcend the intricacies of politics, social injustice, and romance that define the other three novels.
Journey To The West follows Xuanzhang’s pilgrimmage to India to obtain the religious texts of Buddhism. The pilgrimmage was a real historical event, among the most significant in the development of Buddhism in China. What the novel fictionalizes are the 81 crises that Xuanzang encounters along the way, as well as his three disciples introduced by the gods to help him face these challenges.
Sun Wukong, colloquially called The Stone Monkey, is the first disciple and main character through whom this novel is told. Brought to life from the explosion of a magical stone