Bonnie S. McDougall, an expert on modern Chinese literature and history, was one of the first Western scholars to see the brilliance of Bei Dao …. Now the two volumes [The August Sleepwalker and Waves]… allow people who do not read Chinese to gauge the full range of Bei Dao’s work, and also to appreciate his hauntingly sad imagery. Bei Dao uses words as if he were fighting for his life with them …. Astonishing and beautiful poems… This is the Bei Dao who has found a way to speak to all of us, the Bei Dao who learned to assimilate the terrible truth, as he tells us in ‘Comet, that what is hard to imagine/ is not darkness but dawn.
—Jonathan D. Spence, New York Times Book Review

The August Sleepwalker

Fiction by Bei Dao

The August Sleepwalker introduces to American readers the compelling and remarkable poetry of China’s foremost modern poet, Bei Dao (Zhao Zhenkai). One of the most gifted and controversial writers to emerge from the massive upheavals of contemporary China. Bei Dao both reflects and criticizes the conflicts of the Cultural Revolution of the late ’60s and 70s. A youthful Red Guard whose early disillusionment with the destructiveness of the times made him an outsider, Bei Dao joined with other underground poets attempting to create an alternative literature that challenged the received orthodoxies of Maoist China. The author now lives in exile.

Editions: PaperbackClothbound

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Paperback (published April 1, 1990)

ISBN
9780811211321
Price US
15.95

Clothbound (published April 1, 1990)

ISBN
9780811211314
Page Count
144

Bei Dao

Contemporary Chinese poet, representative of the Misty Poets.

Bonnie S. McDougall, an expert on modern Chinese literature and history, was one of the first Western scholars to see the brilliance of Bei Dao …. Now the two volumes [The August Sleepwalker and Waves]… allow people who do not read Chinese to gauge the full range of Bei Dao’s work, and also to appreciate his hauntingly sad imagery. Bei Dao uses words as if he were fighting for his life with them …. Astonishing and beautiful poems… This is the Bei Dao who has found a way to speak to all of us, the Bei Dao who learned to assimilate the terrible truth, as he tells us in ‘Comet, that what is hard to imagine/ is not darkness but dawn.
—Jonathan D. Spence, New York Times Book Review