Poetry Reading by Bei Dao
Poet Bei Dao will read from his work, with an English translation provided, at the University of Redlands
Thursday, April 01, 2004
7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Casa Loma Room
University of Redlands
The Edith R. White Series at the University of Redlands is pleased to welcome Bei Dao, who will be reading his poetry in Chinese, with an English translation provided.
Bei Dao (meaning "Northern Island"; a pseudonym of Zhao Zhenkai) is one of China’s foremost poets of the "misty school," which is characterized by language that is often elusive and unclear.
Bei Dao, was born in 1949 in Beijing, is the son of an administrative cadre and a physician, both of whom hailed from middle-class Shanghai families. During the Cultural Revolution, Bei Dao joined the Red Guards, but soon became disillusioned and was later -- along with virtually all other "revolutionary youth" -- "rusticated," that is, sent to the countryside.
Searching for a fresh poetics, many of China’s young writers of the 1970s experimented with a form of free verse characterized by unusual imagery and elliptical syntax. This elusive, ambiguous style came to be called "menglong shi," or "misty poetry."
Bei Dao fleed into exile after the Tiananmen Square incident in 1989. After living in Denmark, Sweden, and Germany, Bei Dao moved to the United States. He has been inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters as an "honorary member." He attempted to return to China in 1994, but was denied entry into his homeland.
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Sponsor(s): University of Redlands