Tuesday July 14, 2020

Frog is a slog, even for obsessives of the Far East

Frog By Mo Yan: Hamish Hamilton, €24 The awarding of the Nobel Prize for Literature to Chinese writer Mo Yan in 2012 provoked a curious class of controversy. Some felt it inappropriate, even a catastrophe, that a decidedly non-dissident Chinese would

1st February, 2015
6
Mo Yan with his wife Inlan Du, after he received the 2012 Nobel Prize for Literature in December 2012. Picture: Getty

Mo is rather cosy with China’s ruling Communist Party, and in post-Nobel interviews he has suggested that a certain degree of artistic censorship by the State might be no bad thing.

While this is galling to some, Mo’s defenders deem it unfair of Westerners to disregard a writer for not being a rebel or dissident in a nation where such decisions still have real consequences; where, in a sense that is no longer...

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