Hong Ying


Hong Ying
(née Chen Hongying)
b. 1962, Chongqing, Sichuan
Writer
As a writer who commands a broad range of genres and themes, Hong Ying differs from the majority of contemporary women authors. Her difference lies first in her interest in avant-garde poetry, which she began writing in 1980; and second, in her interest in the genre of ‘futuristic fiction’ (weilai xiaoshuo) and autobiographical writing, though this only began after she emigrated to England in 1991. Her early attempts at prose fiction are mainly in the form of short stories and include fantasy constructions in which gender, racial and cultural issues are dealt with in a diversity of temporal and geographical sites. Her autobiography, Daughter of Hunger (Ji’er de nu’er, 1997), marks a departure from her early writing as well as from the tradition of fictional autobiography popularized by women writers in the 1990s. In contrast to many Chinese women writers, who identify themselves with the intelligentsia and examine female existence in an isolated psychological space, Hong situates the writer’s genesis in the despair and psychological deprivation of the slums of her native Chongqing. The struggle for existence, the yearning for love and dignity, as well as the needs of survival, are blended together and integrated into the writer’s search for self-identity. At the same time, the controlled and seemingly detached narration functions as a metaphor for the spiritual weariness that masks the setting’s intense vitality.
Hong’s increasing mastery of many different materials, including photography, has made her a much more complicated as well as popular writer.
Hong, Ying (1998). Daughter of the River. Trans. Howard Goldblatt. London: Bloomsbury Press.
——(2002). K: The Art of Love. Trans. Henry Zhao and Nicky Harmon. London: Marion Boyars Press.
Sieber, Patricia (2001). ‘Hong Ying’. In idem (ed), Red Is Not the Only Color: Contemporary Chinese Fiction on Love and Sex between Women, Collected Stories. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 188–9.
Zhao, Henry (ed.) (1999). A Lipstick Called Red Pepper: Fiction about Gay and Lesbian Love in China. Bochum: Ruhr University Press [numerous stories].
HE DONGHUI

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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