Modern Chinese literature (2017)

I’ve managed to finish a book several days ago. It is a compilation of the modern Chinese short prose created by one of the best Eastern literature publishers in Russia. Texts have several grammatical mistakes though, all in all, it’s a good publisher with really rare and interesting books. Always waiting for their new releases.

Modern Chinese literature

This compilation is created to introduce a reader to the modern Chinese literature from the Guangdong province. It’s the most populous and important province in China and its literature can be considered as “the best in China”. It will not be superfluous to add that Chinese literature is not very popular in Russia. People still remember Mo Yan (Guan Moye) who had received the Nobel Prize in Literature for his book “The Republic of Wine: A Novel” (1993) in 2012. I’ve also read this book in 2013 or 2014 but didn’t enjoy it. This book was created with the goal of popularisation Chinese literature in Russia and also as a part of the cultural exchange between nations so it’s impossible to find this compilation in English.

What’s this all about? This compilation contains short stories about modern Chinese life: big cities and villages, crime and love, money and wealth, uncertainty in future and hard decisions. Some stories are pretty comedic but others are sad because describes the living of a poor people. It was hard to read this compilation! All authors have a different writing style and themes they are touching upon are very hard and important. I read it for almost three weeks which is long enough for me.

Pros

Variety. This compilation presents a huge variety of authors so everyone will be able to find something that is good for him. I personally enjoyed two or three stories and read them with a big patience and interest.

Cons

Someone’s opinion. Pros and cons are going hand in hand in this book. That’s why I don’t like compilations. Editors and translators are trying to pick most noteworthy stories, but it’s almost impossible to satisfy everyone.

Overal

I still can’t make friends with the modern Chinese literature. I thought that as I like Japanese literature (and partly Korean literature too) I’ll be able to understand Chinese literature too, but I still can’t.Well… I’m sure there’s a lot of good authors whom I still wasn’t able to discover. So we keep trying.

Book cover via hyperion-book.ru

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