Pathlight - recommendations for translation by Charles Laughlin

October 15, 2012, Charles Laughlin wrote: "The Pathlight/Paper Republic group are exciting and knowledgeable translators, and their suggestions are pretty good, but I find it regrettable that they exclude women writers, who could be represented on the fiction side by Can Xue, Wang Anyi, or Hong Ying. Also it’s regrettable that poetry is represented by Bei Dao, a poet of considerable accomplishment but who left China decades ago. If anthologies were permissible in the selection, Zhang Er and Chen Dongdong’s bilingual anthology Another Kind of Nation, or Wang Qingping’s recent Push Open the Window would be much more representative of the contemporary vitality of poetry. If it had to be a single author, choosing Zhai Yongming’s The Changing Room would have addressed the gender gap as well. In general, it would be good to balance the view of translators and publishers with those of teachers of Chinese literature on these questions, as we have to teach Chinese literature as a whole on a frequent basis, requiring us to keep our eye on the big picture, as well as how the current scene fits into it."

attached to: Jia Pingwa


# 1.   

As glad as I am to have had my translation work recommended on the WSJ blog, I agree with Charles that some women should have been included in that list. I think Zhai Yongming's poetry is great, and I've reviewed Andrea Lingenfelter's translations in Changing Room here.

On the anthology Another Kind of Nation, though, I have a sharply different view; see my review, here.

Lucas Klein, October 16, 2012, 1:18p.m.


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