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China: A Nation of Readers

Book Tickets Here  (Asia House Arts Members and Students free but must register)

China has recently seen an explosion of new writing as authors young and old, men and women, experiment with new forms (including the hugely popular online novels) and bring stories that reflect the complex realities of China today to an enthusiastic readership.

However, the most popular fiction in China is often by foreign authors if the country’s 2017 Best Sellers List is anything to go by.

Afghan-born American author Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner came in the top 5 of the list. As did Claire McFall’s Ferryman.  The latter is even more of a surprise given that McFall is relatively unknown in the UK but a literary superstar in China.

In partnership with London Book FairLondon Book & Screen Week and Shanghai International Literary Week, Asia House is pleased to welcome two eminent Chinese writers that are greatly contributing to China’s contemporary literary scene and helping shape its direction.

Wang Ruoxu and Li Weichang will be discussing the exciting new writing that is emerging in China and how they are helping develop young authors. They will also be delving into the impact of foreign literature and film in China and why Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and the Benedict Cumberbatch-lead Sherlock TV series have been such phenomenons in the country.

This discussion will be moderated by Isabel Hilton and interpreted by Michelle Deeter. There will be an audience Q&A at the end of the talk. The cash bar will be open from 18:15 and then after the talk until 21:00. There will also be music from Yin Hei Ho, who will be playing the erhu (a traditional Chinese string instrument), after the talk and until 21:00.

About the writers

Wang Ruoxu (王若虚), a member of China Writers Association, was born in Shanghai in 1984 and graduated as a major of financing from the Business School of Shanghai University. Wang joined Shanghai Writers Association in 2009 and is now a full-time writer of the Association. He is also Secretary-General of Shanghai Network Writers Association.

His published works include The Horse Gang (People’s Literature Publishing House), Tail 1, Tail 2 (Shanghai People’s Publishing House), Speed Limit 20 (New World Press), How Come We Go Back, Hotpot Kill, Collections of short stories: At Large (Beijing SDX Joint Publishing Company), That Guy After My Girlfriend (Sichuan People’s Publishing House).

He is of the planning teams of both Sinan Reading Club and Shanghai International Literary Week. He plans and organizes literary talent selection of Shanghai, among which Black Horse Saturday is the latest writing competition for high school students of Shanghai.

His works are inspired by British author like John Galsworthy and  Arthur Conan Doyle. He also gets inspiration from many British crime novels/films, including Gosford Park and Tinker,Tailor,Soldier,Spy .

Li Weichang (李伟长), book critic, was born in 1980 and holds an MA. He is Deputy Director of the Writer Liaison Office of Shanghai Writers Association and a planner of Shanghai Book Fair — Shanghai International Literary Week and Sinan Reading Club. Li is mainly engaged in planning and organizing literary activities, and writing literary reviews. He is also devoted to the cultivation of young writers of Shanghai. Keeping an eye on the latest development of the literary circles in Shanghai and China, Li has written many book reviews and critical articles. Since 2009, he has published more than 200 book reviews, totaling some 900,000 Chinese characters. His book review collections Writers I Knew When I Was Young and Years Spent on Reading will be published soon.


About the Moderator

Isabel Hilton is a London based writer and broadcaster and founder and CEO of chinadialogue.net.

About the Interpreter

Michelle Deeter is a freelance translator and interpreter based in Manchester. Commercial translation is her bread and butter, but she does enjoy literary translation as well. She teaches translation at Newcastle University.




Book Tickets Here (Asia House Arts Members and Students free but must register)


April 11, 2018
18:45 - 21:00
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