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In Change, Mo Yan, the 2012 Nobel Laureate in Literature, personalizes the political and social changes in his country over the past few decades in this novella disguised as autobiographyor vice-versa. Unlike most historical narratives from China, which are pegged to political events, Change is a representative of “people’s history,” a bottom-up rather than top-down view of a country in flux. By moving back and forth in time and focusing on small events and everyday people, Mo Yan breathes life into history by describing the effects of larger-than-life events on the average citizen.
“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.” Nobel Committee for Literature
About the Author
Mo Yan has published dozens of short stories and novels in Chinese. His other works include The Garlic Ballads, The Republic of Wine, Shifu: You'll Do Anything for a Laugh, Big Breasts & Wide Hips, and Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out. Howard Goldblatt is research professor of Chinese at the University of Notre Dame. Founding editor of Modern Chinese Literature, he has contributed essays and articles to the Washington Post, Times of London, TIME Magazine, World Literature Today, and the Los Angeles Times, among other publications.
Table of Contents
A novella in eight chapters by Mo Yan
Translated by Howard Goldblatt
Volume 5 in the What Was Communism? Series edited by Tariq Ali