Duo Duo is the pen name of Li Shizheng, who was born in Beijing in 1951. He started writing poetry in the early 1970s as a youth during the isolated, midnight hours of the Cultural Revolution, and many of his early poems critiqued the Cultural Revolution from an insider's point of view in a highly sophisticated, original style. Often considered part of the "Misty" school of contemporary Chinese poetry, he nevertheless kept a cautious distance from any literary trends or labeling.
After witnessing the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, Duo Duo left China and did not return for more than a decade. Upon his return to China in 2004, the literary community received him with honor and praise. Duo Duo currently teaches at Hainan University and divides his time between Hainan and Beijing. His translations into English include the verse collections Looking Out from Death: From the Cultural Revolution to Tiananmen Square (1989) and The Boy Who Catches Wasps (2002) as well as Snow Plain (2010), a recent collection of short stories. Duo Duo is the twenty-first laureate of the Neustadt Prize and the first Chinese recipient of the award.
Table of Contents
- Duo Duo’s acceptance speech and biographical profile
- Duo Duo new poems, trans. Yibing Huang
- Michelle Yeh, “Monologue of a Stormy Soul: Duo Duo, 1972–88"
- Yibing Huang, "Duo Duo: Master of Wishful Thinking"
SPECIAL SECTION: Jazz Poetry
Guest edited by Lauren Camp
- Introductory essay by Lauren Camp: "What's in the Notes: The Sound of Jazz in Poetry"
- Poetry from Lauren Camp: “Thelonious Monk on a Subway” and “What You Might Hear” plus web exclusive audio clips
- Virgil Suárez (Cuba/US): “Latin Jazz on the Go in Havana”
- Adrian Matejka (Germany/US): “Behind the Yashmak"
- Nii Parkes (Ghana/Great Britain): “Our Love Is Here to Stay” & “Hymn"
- Virgil Mihaiu (Romania; tr. Adam Sorkin): “Finesse de Brasil," “Universal Canticle,” and a web exclusive concert recording.
- Author Profile: E.C. Osondu (Nigeria)
- City Profile: Seoul, South Korea
- First Words: Luma Sarhan, “Approaching Zainab”
- WLT Online Bookclub: The United States of Africa by Abdourahman A. Waberi
- New books: recent translations
CRIME & MYSTERY
- J. Madison Davis, “Scarface Al and His Pals”
- Romeo Çollaku (Albania), Two poems, tr. Peter Constantine
- Stuart Friebert (US), “Good Leg Up, Bad Leg Down"
- Jan Wagner (Germany) Two poems, tr. Chenxin Jiang
Q&A: WLT INTERVIEWS
- Erwin Koch (Switzerland) by John K. Cox
- Adrianne Kalfopoulou (Greece/US), “Ruin”
Web Exclusive: PHOTO GALLERY: Athens Street Art
- Web Exclusive: "But It Was Beautiful" by Erwin Koch
- Luay Hamza Abbas (Iraq), “Spit Out What Is in Your Mouth,” tr. Yasmeen Hanoosh
WORLD LITERATURE IN REVIEW
OUTPOSTS: Literary Events & Landmarks