Friedenspreis des Deutschen Buchhandels 2012 voor Liao Yiwu
Aan de Chinese dichter en schrijver Liao Yiwu werd gisteren in de Frankfurter Paulskerk de Friedenspreis des Deutschen Buchhandels uitgereikt. Liao Yiwu (ook bekend als Lao Wei) werd geboren op 4 augustus 1958 in Yanting, Sichuan Zie ook alle tags voor Liao Yiwu op dit blog.
Uit: For a Song and a Hundred Songs (Vertaald door Wenguang Huang)
“I have written this book three times, thanks to the relentless obstructions of the Chinese security police.
I first started writing it on the backs of envelopes and on scraps of paper that my family smuggled into the prison where I was serving a four-year sentence from 1990 to 1994 for writing and distributing a poem that condemned the infamous, bloody government crackdown on the 1989 student prodemocracy movement in Tiananmen Square.
Even after my release in 1994, the police continued to monitor and harass me. On October 10, 1995, police raided my apartment in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, confiscating the handwritten manuscript of For a Song and a Hundred Songs. As a punishment for what they called “attacking the government’s penitentiary system” with my writings, I was placed under house arrest for twenty days.
I started on my book again from scratch. It took me three years to finish a new version, which was seized in 2001, along with my other unpublished literary works. This time, the police also absconded with my computer.
Writers like to wax poetic and brag about their works in an attempt to secure a berth in the history of literature. Unfortunately, I no longer possess many physical products of my years of toil. Instead, I have become an author who writes for the pleasure of the police. Most of my past memories—the manuscripts that I have painstakingly created about my life, and my poems—are now locked away at the Public Security Bureau. In a grimly humorous twist, the police used to peruse my writings more meticulously than even the most conscientious editors.
Chinese career spies have amazing memories. A director of a local public security branch could memorize many of my poems and imbue them with more complicated ideas than I had originally intended. So in a sense, my writing found a way to the minds and lips of at least one eager audience.
Indeed, the police proved to have an insatiable need for more of my work. So after each successive raid, I dug more holes like a rat, and I hid my manuscripts in deeper and deeper crevices across the city, in the homes of family and friends. My furtive efforts to conceal my work called to mind those of the Nobelist Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, whose handwritten manuscript of The Gulag Archipelago had famously faced similar threats from the KGB. The only way to preserve his writings was to get them published.
In early 2011, after this book was finally smuggled out of China and scheduled to be published in Taiwan and in Germany, I again met resistance from the Chinese authorities.”.
Liao Yiwu (Sichuan, 4 augustus 1958)