Translation as a Productive Cultural Space: Gao Xingjian in Translation

My proposed project focuses on the translation and reception in France of works by the Chinese-French writer, Gao Xingjian, the laureate of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2000. I will use Gao’s novels in French translation as a case study to problematize the pessimistic views on the untranslatability between Chinese and Western languages as well as the manipulation of Chinese literature in the West. Through textual analysis, I argue that translation creates a productive space beyond the limits of the source and target cultures in the contact zone. My stay at the Gao Xingjian Centre in the Department of Asian Studies, L’université d’Aix-Marseille will give me the opportunity to collect the first-hand materials and exchange with the experts as well as with Gao himself. In addition, I intend to communicate the outcome of my research in France in a conference presentation as well as in an article published in a peer-review journal.

Faculty Supervisor:

Sathya Rao


Mingxing Wang



Cultural studies



University of Alberta



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