When Chinese author Mo Yan won the Nobel Prize for literature last year, many critics were fast to pounce on his selection, accusing the committee of making a political choice that glossed over what many consider to be pervasive self-censorship in the writer’s prose. But how much of this is true? In today’s episode of Sinica, we take a closer look at Mo Yan and his work, including an exclusive audio excerpt from his most recent work in English translation.
Joining Kaiser today for this discussion are three names you might recognize from the Beijing literary community: Brendan O’Kane, whom many of you already know through Popup Chinese but who is also well-known as a translator, Alice Liu, who is the lead editor of Pathlight Magazine, and David Moser, an academic and periodic guest on Sinica who heads the CET Beijing immersion program. All three have different but equally informed impressions of Mo Yan and his work, so why not join us and make up your own mind.