Links og udklip: Opsamling om Mo Yan og Nobelprisen

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Mo Yan har fået Nobelprisen i litteratur 2012. Du kan læse min analyse om, hvad prisen kommer til at betyde. Og her er en opsamling med gode links og artikler om Mo og prisen.

Herald Tribune og Eric Abrahamsen, der er oversætter og ekspert i kinesisk litteratur, skriver en glimrende artikel om Mao Zedongs tale Yan’an, som 100 kinesiske forfattere – blandt andre Mo Yan – er blevet bedt om at håndkopiere til en særdugave af talen.

But the hand-copied feature caught the notice of online commentators. Among the hundred calligraphers were most of China’s best-known and respected authors, including Mo Yan, Su Tong, Jia Pingwa and Han Shaogong.

With growing incredulity, critics began to spell out the significance of the exercise: decades after the official repudiation of Soviet-style cultural management, a hundred writers were asked to meticulously transcribe what once amounted to an artistic death sentence pronounced on their forebears — and the vast majority assented.

A few did demur. Yan Lianke, a writer of conscience who is occasionally banned, wanted no part in it. And Wang Anyi noted dryly that she preferred to copy out her own words rather than someone else’s. Yet others didn’t bat an eye at writing phrases like: “The purpose of our meeting today is to ensure that literature and art fit well into the whole revolutionary machine as a component part.”

Guardian og Julia Lovell har en fin introduktion til Mo Yan og prisens betydning.

Mo Yan is notable not only for his creative engagement with modern Chinese history but also, more simply, for his dedication to the craft of writing. As the catchphrase of the market economy-oriented 1990s became “wang qian kan” (“look towards the future”, which, in Chinese, neatly punned the word for “future” on the word for “money”), many writers who had found fame in the 80s joined in the capitalist free-for-all. Plenty of once-serious novelists shelved literary fiction in favour of profit-making: television and film scripts, song-writing, business ventures. In this febrile cultural context, Mo Yan stands out for his commitment to his literary vocation. He is one of the relatively few contemporary Chinese novelists who has stuck with the form long enough to attain intellectual maturity.

New Yorker og Evan Osnos trækker trådene tilbage til 2000, hvor Gao Xingjian vandt Nobels litteraturpris:

But the Nobel has given the country fits. In 2000, the Chinese-born writer Gao Xingjian won the prize. He was a French citizen by then, but he had spent fifty years of his life in China, and his work stuck so closely to the subject that at first the Chinese government didn’t know what to make of it.

The Prime Minister at the time, Zhu Rongji, happened to be giving a press conference the day it was awarded, and he congratulated the laureate: “I am very pleased that a literary oeuvre written in Chinese was awarded the Nobel Prize. Chinese characters have a history of several thousand years and the Chinese language has an inexhaustible appeal.” Except the Premier hadn’t gotten the official line yet: Gao, it turned out, had criticized the Communist Party in the past, and so the government was not at all pleased with his Nobel. The Foreign Ministry spokesperson declared that awarding it to Gao “shows again the Nobel Literature Prize has been used for ulterior political motives, and it is not worth commenting on.” And though some Chinese writers—including this year’s winner, Mo Yan—applauded it, the Writers’ Association said Gao’s win “proves that the committee is very ignorant.” To this day, there are Chinese books on the Nobel Literature prize that simply omit the year 2000 from the history. (Sebastian Veg has a terrific piece on the legacy of Gao’s prize.)

PBS har interview med Xiao Qiang fra China Digitial Times og professor Charles Laughlin. Læs eller se hele interviewet, hvor de blandt andet tale om Mo Yans indflydelse i Kina:

Well, the position of literature in Chinese society has been marginalized in the last 15 years or so. And so belonging to a group of serious writers, his greatest influence would be among those who are particularly interested in literature. A lot of people are reading detective novels and soap opera type of fiction. And so he wouldn’t be appealing to them as much.

To sort of chime in though with what Xiao Qiang is saying, he is in the vice chairman of Chinese writers association and thus a government official.

Granta har et uddrag fra Mo Yans bog “Frog,” så du selv kan læse en bid af Mo’s litteratur, som jeg anbefaler. Her er indledningen:

have to admit that, though I did not make it public, I was personally opposed to my Aunty’s marriage plans. My father, my brothers and their wives shared my feelings. It simply wasn’t a good match in our view. Ever since we were small we’d looked forward to seeing Aunty find a husband. Her relationship with Wang Xiaoti had brought immense glory to the family, only to end ingloriously. Yang Lin was next, and while not nearly the ideal match that Wang would have provided, he was, after all, an official, which made him a passable candidate for marriage. Hell, she could have married Qin He, who was obsessed with her, and be better off than with Hao Dashou . . . we were by then assuming she’d wind up an old maid, and had made appropriate plans. We’d even discussed who would be her caregiver when she reached old age. But then, with no prior indication, she’d married Hao Dashou. Little Lion and I were living in Beijing then, and when we heard the news, we could hardly believe our ears. Once the preposterous reality set in, we were overcome by sadness.

China Digital Times – der i øvrigt også citerer et af mine tweets – har en glimrende opsamling med alt du behøver at vide om Mo Yan.


Hurtige klik fra Kina af Kim Rathcke Jensen. Jeg er journalist og BA i kinesisk. Jeg bor i Beijing, hvor jeg arbejder som Politikens korrespondent i Kina og Asien.

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