“I Am Fan Yusu”: Speeding Up Time-to-Market

By Bruce Humes, published

It can take several years for a piece of Chinese fiction to reach the English-speaking world. But thanks to publication in Chinese on the Internet — and translators working from it rather than the printed book — it looks like this time-to-foreign-reader can be radically reduced. Hopefully, this will help outsiders more quickly grasp what is going on in the “black box” that is China.

Reports Manya Koetse: “I Am Fan Yusu” went viral on Chinese social media in late April 2017. The author has since gone into hiding and her essay has been removed.

In some ways, the popularity of the essay in China is comparable to the recent hype over Alex Tizon’s essay “My Family’s Slave” on Western social media; this non-fiction story about ‘Lola’ Eudocia Tomas Pulido from the Philippines, who lived as a modern slave with an American family for 56 years, went viral on Twitter and Facebook in May. It gripped its many readers for exposing poignant problems in modern-day society that usually stay behind closed doors.

Fan Yusu’s account, in its own way, also revealed the harsh realities of an ever-changing society. China has an estimated 282 million rural migrant workers. The autobiographical tale focuses on the difficult childhood and adult life of one person . . .

*amidst these 282 million – Fan Yusu herself. *

The essay itself has been removed and many of its reader reviews have since been censored. Read about the essay in Behind the Rise and Fade of China’s Literary Sensation Fan Yusu, and read the full English translation here.


# 1.   

Yes, a very moving story. I put my translation up on my translation blog along with links to some articles about "I Am Fan Yusu".

David Cowhig, June 13, 2017, 1:46p.m.

# 2.   

David, are you sure about the URL you gave us?

Or have you already taken it down?

Bruce Humes, June 13, 2017, 11:55p.m.

# 3.   

Bruce, Thank you. I am puzzled. I just cut and pasted the URL -- it is the second entry on my blog currently on my blog gaodawei.wordpress.com

The URL is a bit long with Chinese characters in it so I made a tinyurl shorter URL for it and tried put the link in to 'second entry' above.

David Cowhig, June 14, 2017, 3:01a.m.

# 4.   

Clicked on your "second entry above and accessed your translation.

Many thanks.

Bruce Humes, June 15, 2017, 9:28a.m.


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