African Writing in Chinese Translation: 2021 Round-up + A Peek at 2022

By Bruce Humes "This has been a great year for African writing," said South Africa's Damon Galgut upon receiving the 2021 Booker Prize for his novel, The Promise.  As reported in From the Booker to the Nobel, several other African authors also snagged prestigious European literary prizes during 2021. They include Abdulrazak Gurnah (Nobel), David Diop (International Booker), Mohamed Mbougar … Continue reading African Writing in Chinese Translation: 2021 Round-up + A Peek at 2022

非洲文学:中文译本 African Writing in Chinese Translation

  African Writing in Chinese Translation 107 Authors 270 Translated Works (包含大陆、港台等版本) (PRC, Hong Kong and Taiwan editions) This “mini” database is an ongoing project and is for reference only. To date, most of the original texts are in colonial languages such as English, French or Portuguese. Although some were originally penned in Arabic (e.g., … Continue reading 非洲文学:中文译本 African Writing in Chinese Translation

Nobel Laureate Gurnah’s Tales of Exile and Migration Set to Launch in China within 2nd Half 2022

By Bruce Humes Recent press reports in the English-speaking world note that the new Nobel Laureate for Literature, Abdulrazak Gurnah, is relatively unknown in his native Zanzibar and Africa in general, but none of his novels have ever appeared in Chinese.  This looks set to change. "We aim to publish five of Gurnah's full-length novels within the second … Continue reading Nobel Laureate Gurnah’s Tales of Exile and Migration Set to Launch in China within 2nd Half 2022

Gurnah’s Nobel Prize for Literature: One African Publisher’s Take

During the immediate aftermath of the naming of Zanzibar-born author Abdulrazak Gurnah as the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, it seemed that much of the Sinosphere coverage was either scholarly papers penned a few years back by Chinese scholars and reheated for the occasion, or translated snippets of English-language wire service reports pasted … Continue reading Gurnah’s Nobel Prize for Literature: One African Publisher’s Take

Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o and his “The Perfect Nine”: Now Slated for Future Translation into Chinese?

April 14, 2021 Update: Writer's Literary Agent Confirms that a China Publisher has Bought the Rights to Translate and Publish <The Perfect Nine> in Chinese Reports the Guardian: Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o has become the first writer to be nominated for the International Booker prize as both author and translator of the same book, and the first nominee writing … Continue reading Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o and his “The Perfect Nine”: Now Slated for Future Translation into Chinese?

Coming soon to China: African Poetry, Novellas and Parables Translated Direct from Hausa and Swahili

2021 looks set to be a banner year for what I refer to in shorthand as “Afrolit4China,” i.e., African writing in Chinese translation targeting readers in the People’s Republic.  According to the latest statistics from the sole online mini-database in this niche, the bilingual African Writing in Chinese Translation (非洲文学: 中文译本), now lists 240 translated works by 101 … Continue reading Coming soon to China: African Poetry, Novellas and Parables Translated Direct from Hausa and Swahili

African Writing in Chinese Translation: 2020 Round-up and a Peek at 2021

As Xi Jinping’s maritime Silk Road initiative reaches its tentacles further West into Africa, it’s not just accumulating alarming rates of China-driven debt and sucking up the continent’s mineral exports. Publishers in the People’s Paradise are now showing modest interest in importing what the authorities label  “cultural products.” In this case, contemporary African writing.  According to … Continue reading African Writing in Chinese Translation: 2020 Round-up and a Peek at 2021

Chinese Academics Ask: 非洲文学离我们有多远?

In a recently published essay at The Paper (澎湃新闻) two Chinese academics — one studying in Germany and another in South Africa — ask how a Chinese should go about getting acquainted with contemporary African literature. One suggestion, in case you can’t read indigenous languages such as Swahili, Hausa, Amharic or Shona, or colonial languages such … Continue reading Chinese Academics Ask: 非洲文学离我们有多远?

非漂出版专讯: 2020.4 AfroLit4China Newsbriefs

Recent Interviews with African Novelists (非洲作家最近受访): Petina Gappah, Zimbabwean author of Out of Darkness, Shining Light, about 19th-century explorer David Livingstone: “Livingstone was an absolute gossip and his journals were valuable – he wrote about other people, but also about nature, ants, leaves. The most interesting snippets, I weaved into the story. I learned Swahili … Continue reading 非漂出版专讯: 2020.4 AfroLit4China Newsbriefs

非漂[Fēi Piāo]:非洲文学在中国 — 2018 年终总结

January 25, 2019 By Bruce Humes 非洲文学在中国 — 2018 年终总结 Bruce Humes/文 (徐穆实,非漂 [Fēi Piāo] 博主) 一年时间,大有不同。 2017年,中国大陆渴望体验非洲文学的读者只能看到 8 种新作,全部从英语或法语翻译。作 米亚·科托《梦游之地》,2018 年译成中文的葡语小说之一 近两年,我通过建立“非洲文学:中文译本”(African Writing in Chinese Translation)双语数据库,记录非洲文学引进中国的情况。数据库收录的引进版非洲文学作品,从 1960 年代以来到 2018 年末,总共有 143 种。搜集的大部分是中长篇小说,也有少数短篇小说集、诗集。 2018 年一年的新作品达到13种,也更加多样: 多半译自葡萄牙语或阿拉伯语四名作者来自葡语系国家(安哥拉、莫桑比克),三名来自地中海沿岸国家,其他来自撒哈拉以南非葡语系国家(肯尼亚、尼日利亚、南非)体裁有中长篇、短篇集、戏剧 多样化之外,还有一个好兆头:这些新书大部分是原版(葡语、阿语)直接翻译,不是英译本转译。我还没有向出版商确认,但网上多种信息表明,一部分这些译者有葡语、阿语高等文凭,翻译过几本葡语、阿语书。 中国出版商一直有个不招人待见的坏习惯,引人误会:书脊、版权页上只说了作者国籍,却不一定标明这本书译自什么语言。于是,读东非文学的中国读者完全有理由相信,某本小说的中文版是从斯瓦西里语直接翻的,其实是从英译文转译的。这种 “暧昧” 也许是因为国内某些小语种的译者实在太少,出版商又希望少花钱,缩短上市的时间,就会从英译文转译。 陶菲格·哈基姆《洞中人》,被认为是埃及第一部在出版之后几年有幸上演的剧本 第一次浪潮发生在 1980 年代,受意识形态驱动。国家政策要增进与第三世界、新独立国家的团结,于是外文出版社等国营机构翻译出版了大量非洲作品,如:尼日利亚作家 Wole Soyinka (沃莱·索因卡),肯尼亚小说家 Ngugi wa Thiong’o (恩古吉·瓦·提安哥),塞内加尔诗人(前总统)Léopold Sédar Senghor (列奥波尔德·塞达·桑戈尔),Mouloud Mammeri (阿尔及利亚作家穆鲁德·玛梅利) 等。甚至还给儿童出了非洲民间故事选集。 … Continue reading 非漂[Fēi Piāo]:非洲文学在中国 — 2018 年终总结