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Pleasure of Thinking

Wang Xiaobo Yan Yan

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English
Penguin
10 October 2023
The dazzling essays of the beloved, subversive Chinese writer Wang Xiaobo, a continual bestseller in China, now in English for the first time

Wang Xiaobo made his name as a novelist but his essays, too, have become ongoing bestsellers in China since their publication in the 1990s. Bringing together his thoughts on reading and talking and silence in the Cultural Revolution, about the irrepressible spirit of one beloved pig he met while an 'educated youth', and about being operated on via a textbook, these essays give a rare glimpse into a world rarely seen and discussed with such honesty.

Written with a light touch and with a wry sense of humour, these are also the essays of a great literary talent, grappling with sociology, sexuality and feminism, with the cultural clash of living in the USA, and with Chinese sci-fi, the internet, and beloved European writers like Bertrand Russell and Italo Calvino. Electrifying, containing a razor-sharp wit and intellect, this collection reveals the voice of a generation to English-speaking readers for the very first time.

By:  
Translated by:  
Imprint:   Penguin
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 135mm,  Spine: 16mm
Weight:   226g
ISBN:   9780241648520
ISBN 10:   0241648521
Pages:   224
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  Professional and scholarly ,  College/higher education ,  ELT Advanced ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Wang Xiaobo was born in 1952. From 1968 to 1970, he worked on a farm in Yunnan, China, as an 'educated' youth. He published Golden Age in 1992, first in Taiwan, but publication in China soon followed, where it was an immediate success, still topping bestseller lists today. Wang Xiaobo died of a heart attack in 1997, at the age of forty-four.

Reviews for Pleasure of Thinking

Pleasure of Thinking is a very captivating book. Wang Xiaobo's unique blend of rationality, serenity, candor, and sense of humour serves as an embodiment of the liberalism he ardently believes in. Such expression stands as the archenemy of autocracy, for in autocratic societies, all the regime's endeavors aim to eradicate any fertile ground where liberalism might flourish -- Ai Weiwei Consistently insightful and often charming . . . A wide-ranging, humorous, often sharp collection * Kirkus Reviews * Admired for his cynicism, irony, humor, readers and critics around the world now widely regard Wang Xiaobo as one of the most important modern Chinese authors . . . His [writing is] considered crucial to understanding China's recent past . . . Wang now rivals the World War II-era Hong Kong writer Zhang Ailing as the most popular modern Chinese author -- Ian Johnson * New York Review of Books * Wang Xiaobo was arguably the most influential intellectual of the post-Tiananmen generation, a nonchalant provocateur as well as an unconventional, anti-authoritarian thinker whose writing has stood the test of time -- Sebastian Veg * author of MINJIAN *


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