Congratulations are in order to Mo Yan, the acclaimed Chinese writer who received the presitigous Nobel Prize in Literature this morning. “Through a mixture of fantasy and reality, historical, and social perspectives, Mo Yan has created a world reminiscent in its complexity of those in the writings of William Faulkner and Gabriel García Márquez, at the same time finding a departure point in old Chinese literature and in oral tradition,” according to the award citation. Yan's writing often paints lively portraits of rural China and uses black humor and satire to critique pressing social and moral issues such as poverty and human cruelty.
In addition to the popular film adaptation of Yan's novel, Red Sorghum, the Free Library has several of his works in its collection, including The Garlic Ballads, The Republic of Wine; Shifu, You'll Do Anything for a Laugh; Big Breasts and Wide Hips; and Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out. And in addition to the English-language translations of Yan's works that are linked to in this blog post, the Free Library has the original Chinese-language editions of many of these novels, too.