The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast
Ep 56 - Pai Hsien-yung and Taipei People with Nadia Ho

Ep 56 - Pai Hsien-yung and Taipei People with Nadia Ho

June 10, 2021

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‘According to the ancient precepts, grief supersedes all formalities’

[ this is episode 4 of our Taiwan Season ]

In the fifty sixth episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are introducing ourselves to the Taipei People (台北人 / Táiběi Rén), as written by Pai Hsien-yung. Joining me to question the merits of nostalgia and muse aimlessly on umbrellas and the like is a genuine Taibei ren; the effortlessly hip Nadia Ho.

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(夢 - màng - dream)

pls note I’ve used the character’s traditional form and local Taiwanese pronunciation here!

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Ep 54 - Qiu Miaojin and Notes of a Crocodile with Conor Stuart

Ep 54 - Qiu Miaojin and Notes of a Crocodile with Conor Stuart

May 7, 2021

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‘Some desires, once formed, are impossible to fulfil, so they become frustrations instead. That’s the problem with going forth into new worlds’

[ this is episode 2 of our Taiwan Season ]

In the fifty fourth episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are thumbing through the Notes of a Crocodile (鳄鱼手记 / Èyú Shǒujì). Joining me on the lookout for the shy and elusive reptiloid is Conor Stuart.

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// WORDS OF THE DAY //

(三八 - Sānbā - usually derogatory adjective used to describe ‘frivolous’ women)

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Ep 53 - The Membranes with Chi Ta-wei and Ari Larissa Heinrich

Ep 53 - The Membranes with Chi Ta-wei and Ari Larissa Heinrich

April 28, 2021

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‘Two peach trees, two entirely different universes.’

[ this is episode 1 of our Taiwan Season ]

In the fifty third episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are peeling back The Membranes (膜 / Mó). Joining me at their respective computer terminals in the ocean floor biodome are its author Chi Ta-wei and translator Ari Larissa Heinrich. 

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(赞 - zàn - ‘like’, as in Facebook, Wechat etc)

(情 - qíng - emotion, affection, sentiment)

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Buy Paul French’s Destination Peking here:

https://www.blacksmithbooks.com/books/destination-peking/

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Ep 51 - Li Juan’s Xinjiang non-fiction with Christopher Payne and Jack Hargreaves

Ep 51 - Li Juan’s Xinjiang non-fiction with Christopher Payne and Jack Hargreaves

March 25, 2021

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'I stand alone on the earth, unable to bring the show to an end'

In the 51st episode of the Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast, we're heading into the far west to come face-to-face with Li Juan, a Han Chinese writer who has found some degree of fame writing soulfully about her experiences living among the Kazakh herders of Xinjiang Province. Braving the frontier with me are two of her translators, TrChFic returnee Christopher Payne and friend-of-the-pod Jack Hargreaves. The former translated Li Juan's Distant Sunflower Fields and the latter is one of the two co-translators of her Winter Pasture.

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(“Koychy!” - a versatile Kazakh exclamation, often meaning “no way,” “no thanks,” “get out,” “leave it out” )

( 荒野 - huāngyě- wilderness)

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Ep 47 - Ma Jian and Beijing Coma with Ronald Torrance

Ep 47 - Ma Jian and Beijing Coma with Ronald Torrance

February 5, 2021

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When you've stared at the past for so long that time dissolves, you'll be able to wake from your slumber

In the forty seventh episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are falling into Beijing Coma (肉之土 / Ròu Zhī Tǔ). Avid Ma Jian reader Ronald Torrance is here to guide me from perimeter to epicentre of this colossal novel, and the weighty events it reckons with. Even without politics, stakes are high here: life/death, time/memory, flesh/history, and the intimate bonds that can exist between translators and writers.

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(地标 - Dìbiāo - Landmark)

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Ep 45 - Strange Beasts of China with Yan Ge and Jeremy Tiang

Ep 45 - Strange Beasts of China with Yan Ge and Jeremy Tiang

January 14, 2021

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In bars like this, on nights like this, the people of Yong'an would talk of death

In the forty fifth episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are hunting for the Strange Beasts of China (异兽志 - Yì Shòu Zhì). Two very special guests are joining me this time - the book's author Yan Ge and its translator Jeremy Tiang. If I sound a little off-kilter this episode, it's because I'm star struck!

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(异 - Yì - strange/different)

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Ep 44 - Ge Fei and Peach Blossom Paradise with Canaan Morse

Ep 44 - Ge Fei and Peach Blossom Paradise with Canaan Morse

December 22, 2020

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 Every person's heart is an island, trapped by water, sequestered from the world

In the forty fourth episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are going in search of Peach Blossom Paradise (人面桃花 - Rénmiàn Táohuā) by Ge Fei. Rowing me through the lingering mists and dark waters is craftmaster Canaan Morse, its translator.

Ge Fei has been covered once before on this show. We did his Flock of Brown Birds in Episode 30. This time we are dealing with something less surreal. On the surface, it's a typical 'important Chinese novelist writes historical saga' affair. But beneath...

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(徒 - Tú - in vain)

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Ep 43 - Can Xue and I Live in the Slums with Stefan Rusinov

Ep 43 - Can Xue and I Live in the Slums with Stefan Rusinov

November 26, 2020

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'Underneath the hole is another hole. Do you dare go down?'

In the forty third episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast we are grappling with the experimental literature of Can Xue, as embodied in I Live in the Slums. Helping me train for the performance of a lifetime is Chinese-to-Bulgarian translator & friend of the pod, Stefan Rusinov.

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(审丑 - shěn chǒu - examining ugliness AND/OR the abject, if you like)

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Ep 30 - Ge Fei and Flock of Brown Birds with Eric Abrahamsen

Ep 30 - Ge Fei and Flock of Brown Birds with Eric Abrahamsen

April 21, 2020

Ep 30 art

"Assuming my memory hasn't been obstructed, then something must be interfering with time"

In the thirtieth episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast, we are looking at Ge Fei's Flock of Brown Birds (褐色鸟群 / Hésè Niǎoqún) Our guest is Eric Abrahamsen, one of the founding members of Paper Republic

Ge Fei on Paper Republic

Translator Poppy Toland on Paper Republic

 

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(记忆 / Jìyì / memory)

(叙事者 / Xùshìzhě / narrator)

 

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Ep 29 - Song Aman and Gongsun’s Dreams with Michelle Deeter

Ep 29 - Song Aman and Gongsun’s Dreams with Michelle Deeter

April 12, 2020

Ep 29 art

"Memory comes from forgetting"

In the twenty ninth episode of The Translated Chinese Fiction Podcast, we are looking at Song Aman's Gongsun's Dreams (公孙画梦 / Gōngsūn Huàmèng) Our guest is Michelle Deeter, returning for her second appearance on the show! This story is not yet published in English. The Chinese version features in Song Aman's collection Inland Romance, published in Chinese by Jiangsu Phoenix Literature and Art Publishing.

Michelle Deeter's homepage

Song Aman on Paper Republic

 

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// WORDS OF THE DAY //

(魔方 / mófāng / rubik's cube)

(利薄多销 / lìbóduōxiāo / small profits, numerous sales)

 

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