The Manifestation Of The Translation Style In Bei Dao’s Poetics

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Erin Deitzel (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Germán Campos-Munoz

Abstract: Bei Dao, a 20th century Chinese poet, occupies a unique place in the context of contemporary Chinese poetry as a representative of the Misty poetry movement from the 1970s and 80s. Bei Dao’s poetry is composed in what he calls the “translation style,” a poetic form that originated with translation work done in underground literary circles in Beijing during the Cultural Revolution. The gap in scholarship regarding analysis of this integral aspect of Bei Dao’s poetics has led to critique of the translation style without acknowledging its origins and features. In order to effectively analyze Bei Dao’s poetry, an understanding of the translation style and its features is necessary. In this thesis I propose to define the translation style and categorize it into four manifestations: abrasion, dislocation, immunization, and inflammation. These manifestations are indicative of the consequences of and the methods of resistance to the restrictions imposed on language during the Cultural Revolution. I use close readings of five poems and categorize them by these four manifestations to examine the poetic performance of the translation style in Bei Dao’s work.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Deitzel, E. (2019). The Manifestation Of The Translation Style In Bei Dao’s Poetics. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2019
Bei Dao, Misty poetry, translation style, Cultural Revolution, contemporary Chinese poetry

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