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Renwen Society Presents: Zhu Ziqing: On the Centennial Anniversary of His Splashing Oars and Lantern Light on the Qinhuai River (Online)
On an August night in 1923, Zhu Ziqing and Yu Pingbo, two prominent Chinese writers, took a boat ride along the famed Qinhuai River in Nanjing and each wrote an essay under the same title of “Splashing Oars and Lantern Light on the Qinhuai River.” Both pieces had subsequently become classics in the history of modern Chinese literature. This debut work of prose by Zhu was highly praised by Zhou Zuoren, a famous writer, essayist, and a translator, who praised it as "a model of the vernacular art." In the same year, Zhu Ziqing's long poem "Destruction" was published. This long lyrical poem had a far-reaching significance as part of the May Fourth Movement and was compared to “Encountering Sorrow” (Lí Sāo), a seminal elegy written in the early 3rd century, BCE.

Having served as the Chair of the Department of Chinese Literature at Tsinghua University, Zhu Ziqing was especially adept at writing vernacular prose and new-style poetry. His prose works such as "Retreating Figure," “Moonlight in Lotus Pond Lotus Moon,” and "Haste" were well-known, and have been included in Chinese primary and secondary school textbooks for decades. Countless students in China read them, which has made them a part of the collective memory of several generations. Mao Zedong even praised Zhu Ziqing in his famous article "Farewell, Mr. Leighton Stuart."

On the centennial of the “Splashing Oars and Lantern Light on the Qinhuai River,” the Renwen Society presents a lecture on Zhu Ziqing on February 11, 2023 by Ms. Jing Hu, Lecturer from the University of Pennsylvania. She will discuss Zhu Ziqing's academic and life achievements, his most famous works, and the stories behind their composition.

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Feb 11, 2023 08:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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