Pathlight relaunch

Dear friends of Chinese literature,

Pathlight magazine is thrilled to announce the relaunch of the journal, with a new issue “Sense of Place” available now as an ebook world-wide, and for sale as a print magazine in the US (international shipping coming soon!).

Pathlight magazine was founded in 2010 in Beijing, originally in collaboration with People’s Literature Magazine, to publish Sinophone short stories and poems in translation. Since then, we have been honored to present writing by up-and-coming authors as well as literary luminaries such as Nobel laureate Mo Yan. However, as the magazine was printed and distributed primarily in China, with digital copies only sporadically available, it hasn’t always been easy to get hold of Pathlight. This is about to change. We are delighted to announce that Pathlight’s first international edition, “Sense of Place,” is now available for sale in both print and ebook versions.

Please see the attached press release for more details, or visit the magazine website at https://pathlightmag.com/

Thanks for reading!

Eric Abrahamsen eric@coalhillbooks.com

Peach Blossom Paradise long-listed for National Book Award

Canaan Morse’s translation of Ge Fei’s Peach Blossom Paradise has been long-listed for a National Book Award. Here’s the list of nominated books for the translated literature category. For more information, see this NPR report.

Translated Literature

  • Maryse Condé, Waiting for the Waters to Risetranslated from the French by Richard Philcox
  • Elisa Shua Dusapin, Winter in Sokcho, translated from the French by Aneesa Abbas Higgins
  • Ge Fei, Peach Blossom Paradise, translated from the Chinese by Canaan Morse
  • Nona Fernández, The Twilight Zone, translated from the Spanish by Natasha Wimmer
  • Bo-Young Kim, On the Origin of Species and Other Stories, translated from the Korean by Joungmin Lee Comfort and Sora Kim-Russell
  • Benjamín Labatut, When We Cease to Understand the World, translated from the Spanish by Adrian Nathan West
  • Elvira Navarro, Rabbit Island: Stories, translated from the Spanish by Christina MacSweeney
  • Judith Schalansky, An Inventory of Losses,translated from the German by Jackie Smith

Hu Xudong’s Poems in Translation — a call for help

Dear colleagues and friends,

As our MCLC blog has reported, Hu Xudong 胡续冬, poet and professor at Peking University, passed away on Aug 22, 2021. This is a heartbreaking loss that many will find impossible to recover from. As Christopher Lupke commented on social media, Hu “was such a character and full of life.” And for me as well as for Beida, an intimate, nonconformist, and lively atmosphere is now gone. I shared my 挽联 on social media: https://www.facebook.com/pu.wang.104/posts/10157804722426642

Currently Hu’s students and followers are collecting his works, including his poems translated into other languages. A scholar and true epitome of world literature, Hu was a polyglot/polymath and worked with various translators on various occasions to render his works into English, Portuguese, and Spanish, among others. If you know any references to these works in translation, please contact me at pwang@brandeis.edu (or WeChat: wangpu101). I’ll forward the information and texts to the editing group that is still in the making back in China. Thank you very much for your assistance in advance.

May Hu Xudong rest in peace and stay forever young.

Pu Wang pwang@brandeis.edu

Hu Xudong dead at 47

Photograph of Hu Xudong’s funeral.

Professor Hu Xudong (胡續冬, also known by his nickname 胡子) from the Institute of World Literature at Peking University passed away on August 22, at the age of 47. He has published many poem collections including 日曆之力 (The Strength of the Calendar) and essay collections like 去他的巴西 (The Hidden Passion in Brazil). He was the leading figure of a poet group based at Peking University called 五四文學社 and through his classes and social activities he created a huge impact on many students, including me. On August 26, his funeral was held in Beijing.

Here is a link to some of his poems in the original China and with English translations: https://www.lyrikline.org/en/poems/10724. Here is an article dedicated to him by Wu Fei. Also, here’s a link to two articles, one by poet Liao Weitang and the other by Professor Zhu Jinjiang, published in 北京青年報.

Sincerely,

Yiwen Liu

Artist Hung Liu dead at 73

Source: NYT (8/22/21)
Hung Liu, Artist Who Blended East and West, Is Dead at 73
An immigrant from China, she once said her goal was “to invent a way of allowing myself to practice as a Chinese artist outside of a Chinese culture.”
By Holland Cotter

The artist Hung Liu in her studio in front of her 2020 work “Rat Year 2020.” Her work incorporated photo-based images that combined the political and the personal. Credit…John Janca

Hung Liu, a Chinese American artist whose work merged past and present, East and West, earning her acclaim in her adopted country and censorship in the land of her birth, died on Aug. 7 at her home in Oakland, Calif. She was 73.

The cause was pancreatic cancer, Nancy Hoffman Gallery, which represents Ms. Liu in New York, said in a statement.

Her death came less than three weeks before the scheduled opening of a career survey, “Hung Liu: Portraits of Promised Lands,” at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington. She was the first Asian American woman to have a solo exhibition there.

“Five-thousand-year-old culture on my back; late-twentieth-century world in my face” is how Ms. Liu described her life-changing arrival in the United States from China in 1984, when she was 36 and already an accomplished painter. Her goal in America, she once said, was “to invent a way of allowing myself to practice as a Chinese artist outside of a Chinese culture.” Continue reading

Paper Republic no. 4

Here at the Ides of August (well, close enough), we bring you portentous news: there’s been a changing of the guard at Paper Republic! Our esteemed colleague Yvette Zhu is stepping down from management team duties, owing to the time pressures of her actual job, that pays her an actual salary. She’s has served admirably during this time. In fact her greatest contributions have yet to see the light of day – but more about that soon! We are sorry to see her go, and secretly hope she’ll be back soon.

In the meantime, this sad news is balanced out by the addition of three new members to Paper Republic’s management team: please welcome Jennifer Wong, Megan Copeland, and Danny Parrot to the dugout! Each has their own quite distinct background, and brings their own strengths to the team. We really look forward to expanding our roster of projects with their help.

What’s happening, otherwise? It’s Women in Translation month, that’s what! Worlds Without Borders has a list of 11 translated books by Asian women writers, and you can also check out US PEN, Lithub, the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses and many other locales for relevant reading lists. We also note that there’s currently no way to search the Paper Republic database for works by female writers, translated by female translators, and we resolve to add that capability. Continue reading

Paper Republic 3

Hello again! You must have been champing at the bit to receive this next issue of our newsletter. Well you need wait no longer. It’s been a busy time for the PR management team, what with the delights that were the Aberdeen Festival of Chinese Translation and Bristol Translates as well as our working toward some big announcements we can make soon. Watch this space. Then there’s the small matters of the welcome distraction, the Olympics, followed eagerly by Nicky and Emily, upcoming camping trips for Jack and Eric, and big work projects and exams for Yvette and Lirong.

Anyway, first for a little housekeeping. Remember back to May 2020? (I don’t know about you, but I can’t tell if it feels like yesterday or ten years ago with the past year and a bit the world has had.) So whether you do remember or not, a reminder: Paper Republic collaborated with Leeds Centre for New Chinese Writing to run Give-it-a-go, bringing together 124 translators plus ourselves to have a go at translating Deng Anqing’s “Forty Days: Growing Closer to My Parents during Quarantine” (read the joint translation here). Since then, this piece and others from the Epidemic Series have been translated into Spanish, hereherehere and here, plus, I believe, into Slovenian, somewhere. The new good news is that, more recently, Deng’s account of lockdown at home is now available in Danish, in DanmarkKina magazine #115. It feels good for PR to have played a role in giving these stories a broader, more international readership. Continue reading

Jing Wang dies at 71

Source: MIT News (7/29/21)
Jing Wang, professor of Chinese media and cultural studies, dies at 71
Wang, who founded the China-based media activism nonprofit NGO2.0, taught at MIT since 2001.
By Andrew Whitacre | Comparative Media Studies/Writing

Headshot of Jing Wang

Jing Wang, S. C. Fang Professor of Chinese Language and Culture. Credit: Jon Sachs, MIT SHASS Communications

Jing Wang, the S.C. Fang Professor of Chinese Languages and Culture, and a longtime member of the MIT faculty in Global Studies and Languages and Comparative Media Studies/Writing, passed away on Sunday in Boston after a heart attack.

For decades, Wang was a leading scholar of the intersection of media and activism in China. Following a bachelor’s degree at National Taiwan University, she studied comparative literature at the University of Michigan and then at the University of Massachusetts, where she earned her PhD. She continued her focus on literature at Duke University, where she was faculty for 16 years and authored her first books. 1992’s The Story of Stone, which was awarded a Joseph Levenson Book Prize for the year’s best book on premodern China, explored traditional Chinese literature, but her next book, High Culture Fever: Politics, Aesthetics, and Ideology in Deng’s China (1996), marked a move toward her study of Chinese media more broadly.

Continue reading

Chinese Literature Today news

Dear MCLC Friends and Colleagues

Summer greetings from the University of Oklahoma! Over the last year I assumed the Editor-in Chief position of Contemporary Chinese Thought with the understanding that after this year we will be merging CLT with CCT to launch a new title: CLTT, or Chinese Literature and Thought Today with Routledge. The new journal will continue the trajectory of CCT as an interdisciplinary hub for Chinese thought in English translation, but CLTT will expand its breadth to include Chinese literature and poetry, literary criticism, poetics interviews as well. CLTT will maintain many aspects of the award-winning design of CLT’s parent journal, World Literature Today (America’s longest-running world literature journal), so that we can continue in CLT’s tradition of marrying aesthetic attention to detail more typical of a literary trade publication with the rigor of a peer-review journal. We believe that by combining our journals’ individual strengths, we can bring more attention to the scholars and authors we translate and publish.

Below, I am including the latest CLT Editor’s Note, which goes into more detail about the up-coming issue of CLT and more details about CCT’s amazing history and our hopes for the future.  Thank you all so much for your support of both CLT and CCT over the years. It has been a tremendous honor getting to know so many of you and doing our small part to get your scholarship, translations, reviews, poetry, fiction, and more out to readers. So, on behalf of my colleagues Zhu Ping and Julie Shilling, thank you again and we are genuinely looking forward to working with you all to shape the future of Chinese Literature and Thought Today.  A new CFP will soon follow.

Onward!

Jonathan Stalling
Editor in Chief, Chinese Literature Today & Contemporary Chinese Thought Continue reading

What China scholars can do about Xinjiang crisis

Source: University of Westminster Contemporary China Blog (7/21/21)
What China Studies Scholars Can Do about the Xinjiang Crisis
By Guldana Salimjan

In 2019, at a dinner conversation with several established China scholars, I mentioned that it is dangerous for me to return to China and do further research because of the dire situation in Xinjiang. A professor from China was puzzled, ‘Why is that? I go back to my field site every year!’ I sighed but quickly explained to her, ‘Because right now the government has campaigns targeting Turkic Muslim people, and I am from one of these communities.’ She still expressed disbelief and continued, ‘But you are not Uyghur—they are outrageous.’ I was utterly shocked this time and my mind went blank. A friend and colleague overheard us and intervened, which prompted the professor to defend her remarks: ‘normal Chinese people’ think that Uyghurs ‘are outrageous,’ she added. She offered the excuse that because she conducted fieldwork in eastern China and predominantly Han areas, her knowledge of Xinjiang was based on the ideas of people there. This, she thought, justified her bigoted pronouncements that Uyghurs ‘are outrageous’ and not ‘normal Chinese people.’ In the end, she deferred by saying that she was actually not very informed about Xinjiang and was simply quoting her interlocutors’ opinions. Continue reading

Global Storytelling

HKBU launches Global Storytelling: Journal of Digital and Moving Images

The Center for Film and Moving Image Research at Hong Kong Baptist University has launched the inaugural issue of Global Storytelling: Journal of Digital and Moving Images.

Housed at the Academy of Film of HKBU and published by the University of Michigan Press, Global Storytelling is a peer-reviewed, open-access semiannual journal that serves as an international and interdisciplinary forum for intellectual debates concerning the politics, economics, culture, and technology of the moving image.

“No cinema or media journal has before focused on storytelling across multiple platforms and genres, theatrically and digitally both in its affect (emotional engagement) and effect (social impact). Examining how audio-visual narrative works and functions in its multifaceted formations and formats, this journal fills that void,” says Professor Ying Zhu, the Founding Chief Editor of the new journal, who is also Director of the Academy’s Centre for Film and Moving Image Research.

The inaugural issue of Global Storytelling includes 11 articles written by prominent academics and researchers on themes of Hong Kong and social movements, building and documenting national and transnational cinema, Sino-US relations, and the narrative of virus. Continue reading

Cornell East Asia Series announcement

Dear colleagues,

I’m happy to announce that the Cornell East Asia Series, a press founded in 1973 in the East Asia Program at Cornell University, is now an imprint of the Cornell University Press. With new staff, new resources, and a new design for the series, we are open to new proposals and new manuscripts for the fall. We cover East Asian humanities generally but are also specifically interested in acquiring scholarship on contemporary Chinese poetry and fiction, Chinese media studies, works of scholarly and literary translation, translation theory, and translation/theory hybrid works. Our past publications include Petrus Liu’s Stateless Subjects, Andrew Jones’ first monograph Like a Knife, and Deathsong of the River, a translation and reader’s guide for the television series 河. Our full catalog is here and our guidelines are here. For questions, or to submit a proposal or manuscript, please contact our editor, Alexis Siemon, at ceas@cornell.edu.

Thanks very much!

Nick Admussen
Associate Professor of Chinese Literature
Cornell University

Video Lecture Series

The MCLC Video Lecture Series continues to grow. Since Christopher Rosenmeier and I launched it nearly a year ago, we have added several new lectures, including, most recently, Eileen Cheng’s “Lu Xun: The ‘In-Between.'” To register to use the lectures in the series, please click here to fill out a short form. Once you complete the form, you will be sent an email with the password.

Kirk A. Denton

Paper Republic newsletter June 2021

With permission from the good folks at Paper Republic, the MCLC LIST will be posting its monthly newsletters, which are chock full of informatin related to .–Kirk

Paper Republic Newsletter (June 2021)

Hello, email inbox managers around the world! This is your fortnightly round-up of recent news regarding Chinese literature, the people who write it, the people who translate it, and the people who read it.

What’s going on these days? Yan Ge has switched to writing in English, that’s what. And how: her debut English-language story collection and novel have already sold, to Faber and Scribner. While this is obviously objectively awesome news, there is something a tiny bit bittersweet about it for those of us who translate. Nothing has been lost, we tell ourselves. Nothing lost! We have not asked Jeremy Tiang for a quote, but imagine him gazing fondly yet a little forlornly at a copy of Strange Beasts of China (which is hot in Philly).

If you’re tired of books (as if), why not watch some book-related movies next month? The Chinese Visual Festival has a great line-up of Chinese-language film, including a screening of Jia Zhangke’s Swimming Out Till the Sea Turns Blue, a documentary about three Chinese authors (Yu Hua, Jia Pingwa, and Liang Hong) and their connection to the land. Note that the related event with Jia Pingwa and Liang Hong has been cancelled, as well as a few of the film screenings, as well as… Well, more about that in the next newsletter. Continue reading

Robin Munro (1952-2021)

Source: SOAS (6/18/21)
In Memoriam: Robin Munro (1952-2021)
By Donald Clarke

IMG - Robin Munro

Robin Munro

Robin Munro, human rights scholar and activist, and the author of pathbreaking studies of human rights abuses in China, passed away peacefully of complications from illness on May 19, 2021.

I

Robin was born in London on June 1, 1952, a brother to 4-year-old Sandra. He had a peripatetic childhood. His father Sandy was at the time a lecturer at King’s College London in physiology. When Sandy decided to study medicine, he and Robin’s mother, Ailie, sent Robin and Sandra in 1955 to live in Aberdeen for a year with their paternal grandparents and other extended family members, so that Sandy could better focus on his studies. It was a difficult time for both Robin and Sandra, despite the warm care they received, and was the beginning of a special closeness and love between them that lasted all of Robin’s life.

After his return from Aberdeen, Robin lived in London until 1958, when his father, who had always wanted to return to Scotland, took up a lectureship at the Veterinarian School at Glasgow University. In Glasgow, Robin went to Hillhead High School, where he flourished academically and personally. In 1962, however, his parents split up and his father moved to Edinburgh. After about a year, Robin asked if he could live with his father because he felt sorry for him and wished to support him, and with the consent of his mother went off to Edinburgh. This move, however, had an unhappy outcome; his father was in an emotionally unstable state and Robin was under unbearable pressure. Nevertheless, he managed to do well academically at George Watson’s College and got the necessary qualifications to enter Edinburgh University in 1969. Continue reading