Modern China and the West

Translation and Cultural Mediation


In Modern China and the West: Translation and Cultural Mediation, the authors investigate the significant role translation plays in the act of cultural mediation. They pay attention to transnational organizations that bring about cross-cultural interactions as well as regulating authorities, in the form of both nation-states and ideologies, which dictate what, and even how, to translate. Under such circumstances, is there room for individual translators or mediators to exercise their free will? To what extent are they allowed to do so?

The authors see translation as a "shaping force." While intending to shape, or reshape, certain concepts through the translating act, translators and cultural actors need to negotiate among multifarious institutional powers that coexist, including traditional and foreign.

Contributors include: Françoise Kreissler, Angel Pino, Shan Te-hsing, Nicolai Volland, Joyce C. H. Liu, Huang Ko-wu, Isabelle Rabut, Xiaomei Chen, Zhang Yinde, Peng Hsiao-yen, Sebastian Hsien-hao Liao, and Pin-chia Feng.

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Peng Hsiao-yen, Ph.D. (1989), Harvard University, is Researcher of Modern Chinese Literature at Academia Sinica. She has published extensively on China and the West, including Dandyism and Transcultural Modernity: The Dandy, the Flaneur, and the Translator in 1930s Shanghai, Tokyo, and Paris (Routledge, 2010).

Isabelle Rabut, Ph.D. (1992), Institut national des langues et civilisations orientales (INALCO), is Professor of Modern Chinese literature at INALCO. She has published on modern and contemporary authors, especially Shen Congwen, the jingpai writers and Yu Hua. She also has translated into French numerous 20th century literary works.
“… this volume collects well-researched chapters that reflect the newest scholarship, and in this way it is a meaningful contribution to the field of translation studies and modern Chinese studies.”… “For researchers of twentieth-century China-West cultural exchanges and the history of translation in modern China, this book is a must-read, as its chapters are mostly firmly grounded in primary sources and are generally convincing and well-written.”
Qian Liu Beijing Normal University Oxford Comparative Criticism & Translation (2014)
Series Editors' Foreword
Contributor Biographical Information

Peng Hsiao-yen and Isabelle Rabut

Section I Translators and Cultural Actors as Mediators
1 China-Europe: Transcontinental “Intellectual Cooperation” during the Interwar Period
Françoise Kreissler
2 Ba Jin as Translator
Angel Pino
3 Eileen Chang as a Chinese Translator of American Literature
Shan Te-hsing
4 The Birth of a Profession: Translators and Translation in Modern China
Nicolai Volland

Section II Translation as a Shaping Force
5 Psychic Force and its Betrayals: Re-treating Tan Sitong’s Translation of Psyche
Joyce C. H. Liu
6 Translating Liberalism into China in the Early Twentieth Century
Max K.W. Huang
7 Chinese Romanticism: The Acculturation of a Western Notion
Isabelle Rabut
8 Mapping a “New” Dramatic Canon: Rewriting the Legacy of Hong Shen
Xiaomei Chen

Section III Transcultural Mediations
9 The Shanghai School: Westernised Urbanity and Scriptural Mimesis
Zhang Yinde
10 A Traveling Text: Souvenirs entomologiques, Japanese Anarchism, and Shanghai Neo-Sensationism
Peng Hsiao-yen
11 From Poetic Revolution to Nation-(Re)building: Vicissitudes of Modernity in Modern Chinese Poetry
Sebastian Hsien-hao Liao
12 Ghostly China: Amy Tan’s Narrative of Transnational Haunting in The Hundred Secret Senses, The Bonesetter’s Daughter, and Saving Fish from Drowning
Pin-chia Feng

Specialists and post-graduate and undergraduate students in modern China and the West, Sino-European relations, translation studies, China studies, and Asian-American literature.