Paper Republic: Chinese Literature Matters

红高粱家族 (lit. Red Sorghum Family)

Novel by Mo Yan.


Red Sorghum: A Novel of China

Translated by Howard Goldblatt, April, 1994

Though this is the first of Mo Yan's novels to be translated into English, many Americans know his work from the film Red Sorghum , winner of the Silver Bear at the 1988 Berlin Film Festival. The four-chapter novel spans 40 years in rural China through flashbacks and foreshadowing, beginning with the Japanese invasion in the 1930s. Sorghum, used as food and as an ingredient of a potent wine, had been the focus and metaphor of peasant life during peacetime. In wartime, it becomes intertwined with the struggle for life.


Red Sorghum: A Novel of China Penguin April 1994 UK

Original Publications:

红高粱家族 (Mainland China)