Chi Zijian, short stories for three Lu Xun awards.

For a better understanding of the writer Chi Zijian, I read her short story collections which, outside of China, are hardly mentioned. Yet some of them are of very high standard.

She was born in 1964 in the far north of China, near the small town of Mohe, along the Amur River which marks the border with Russia.

She leaves her hometown to a Normal school and then to Beijing Normal University and the Lu … Lire la suite

Mo Yan: short stories by a Nobel prize.

When we speak of Mo Yan we specially mention his novels, his “long” novels which sometimes  and wrongly scare away some readers. But he wrote more than a hundred short stories and many “short” novels and novellas. As he mentions in his foreword to “Shifu …”, a collection of short stories published in the United States: “the stature of a writer can only be determined by the thought revealed in a work, not by its … Lire la suite

Anni Baobei: a flower in the dark.

This is the nickname given to Anni Baobei by her”fans” for her novels of desolation and isolation. She is one of the most famous authors in modern China particularly among women and people under 35. “The Road of Others,” a collection of three newly-published (1) short stories is the translation of her first book “Goodbye Vivian” (2001). This short story, first published online secured her immediate fame.

1 – A literary star of the internet:… Lire la suite

Qiu Xiaolong: more than detective stories in my life !

Qiu Xiaolong, whom I met recently, noted that one speaks mainly of his detective novels. This mentioned without acrimony, as he is a model of courtesy, but I have to take this into account: for Qiu Xiaolong, the main thing is poetry!

Poetry, from theTang to TS Eliot and … Qiu Xiaolong.

His research for a thesis on the Anglo-American poet TS Eliot, led him to St. Louis (Missouri) with a grant from the Ford … Lire la suite

Yang Xianhui and Wang Bing: let survivors of labour camps talk and testify.

Two films by Wang Bing are just released: “Fengming, chronicle of a Chinese woman,” an amazing documentary film, three hours long, where a long time Communist recounts her life and the death of her husband in a camp, in a casual and controlled way, but where one can feel love and humanity. “The Ditch” is a film that deals with a camp for “reeducation through labor” and the famine of 1960. Both films are directly … Lire la suite

Shi Zhecun, modernism and continuity in Shanghai.

The publisher Bleu de Chine Gallimard has published several books of good quality on literature of the 1930s including an excellent collection of texts and drawings by Feng Zikai (1).

With the short stories by Shi Zhecun (2), published a few months ago, in a translation by Marie Laureillard and Gilles Cabrero, you can discover an author somewhat forgotten and whom we knew only with two short stories translated into the excellent book “The Shanghai … Lire la suite

Mo Yan, the short story collection “The beauty riding a donkey…”

These last months, Mo Yan has been on the top of the news: the French publication of “Frogs” (1) followed a few days later by the award to this novel of the Mao Dun Prize (shared with four other writers) but a prize of 50,000 euros each.

Recently was published a collection of short stories with the evocative title: “The beauty riding a donkey on Chang’an Avenue” (2) with a book cover supposed to catch … Lire la suite

Su Tong: international profile and new books.

Su Tong is one of the writers shortlisted for the prestigious “Man Booker International” prize. A short book which has just been published “On a Bicycle” (1) is a good example of a talent that you may also enjoy in a few months when will be published in French a good novel (2) already translated into English and award-winning in Asia.

A dream, the “Booker International” prize :

 

The prize, endowed by the Man … Lire la suite

Ha Jin and Chinese migrants, a great writer, one of them…

Not much is said at this moment about the Sino-American writer Ha Jin, in my view a major writer; his book ” War Trash ” is one of the most remarkable novels I’ve read in recent years. Good news, his latest novel, “A Free Life”, his first text on Chinese migrants in the United States, will be translated from English by Editions du Seuil In Paris, next september; we’ll come back on this.

“A Lire la suite

Yiyun Li: Two superb collections of short stories

The first collection of short stories by Yiyun Li has just been translated into French (1). We already mentioned it in August 2008 at the time of the release in France of Wayne Wang’s film “A Thousand Years of Good Prayers,” inspired by the short story, title of the collection. Amazed by the talent of a writer, totally unknown in France, I even contacted her for a telephone interview.

Having won many prizes in the … Lire la suite

The “Man Booker International prize” for Wang Anyi?

The “Booker International Prize”, sponsored by the Man Group, is awarded every two years, for all his work, to a writer in English or translated into English. It complements the Man Booker prize, the English “Goncourt”.

The list of 13 selected for the international prize has just been published, it includes well-known writers such as John Le Carré or Philip Roth, but also for the first time two Chinese writers: Wang Anyi and Su Tong … Lire la suite

Wang Anyi: Madam Shanghai.

After Eileen Chang, it was quite natural to read Wang Anyi, even if she does not appreciate being compared to this writer of the 1940s. A little book has just been published in France “In Search of Shanghai” (1). The publisher P. Picquier has done much to make Wang Anyi known. Apart of the three “Loves”, small novels, almost classics, he has published one of the finest pieces of contemporary Chinese literature “The Song of … Lire la suite

For Shi Tiesheng, the end of a painful journey.

The Chinese writer Shi Tiesheng died at the age of 59 the last day of 2010. The end of a painful journey after 38 years in a wheelchair and with three dialysis sessions per week during 12 years. This is one of the major Chinese writers, regarded by many in his country as the equal of Mo Yan, Yu Hua, Yan Lianke, but with few translations and quite unknown in the West.

Suffering can lead Lire la suite