We Cannot Stop the Rumbling Trains: Contemporary Chinese Poetry (Transreading) (Summer 2019)

We Cannot Stop the Rumbling Trains: Contemporary Chinese Poetry (Transreading) (Summer 2019)

Rejuvenate your poems with a bold, new wave of Chinese voices

From scenes of rapid industrial development to smog-choked megacities, to moments of stunning meditative beauty, there’s something for everyone in the rich and vibrant contemporary poetry of China. On this course students will look at a variety of poems written by poets with links to the Chinese tradition, sourced largely from magazines and anthologies produced with a focus on contemporary Chinese poetry. We will also take a look at some articles / short fiction about contemporary Chinese life to help contextualise some of the poems. We’ll also spend some time focusing on literal translation and the differences between Chinese and English writing systems, considering the impact that a ideograph syllable-timed language may have on writing and recitation, looking at the poems of Sheng Xing, Ming Di, Duo Duo and Yang Lian amongst others, and using translations of their poetry as spark-points for our own writing. This course is ideal for the poet wanting to go beyond the shallows of popular Western (mis)conceptions of China and explore its incredible diversity of ideas and poetries. A knowledge of China / Chinese is absolutely non-essential. (This is a repeat of a course that has run previously.)

5 fortnightly sessions over 10 weeks. No live chats. Suitable for UK & International students.

Transreading courses – co-curated with Elzbieta Wójcik-Leese – invite us to read poems brought to English by translation, English-language poems inhabiting other cultures, and multilingual poems whose English hosts other tongues. We translate texts and/or compose new poems in response to our readings; in this process of trans-reading and trans-writing we open our poetries to the multi-literate world.

More information about how all our online courses work can be found on the Online Courses page.

Image credit: looking4poetry

About David Tait View Profile

David Tait lives in Nanjing, China, where he works as a teacher. His first collection Self-Portrait with The Happiness (2014) received an Eric Gregory Award and was shortlisted for the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection and Polari First Book Prizes. A follow-up pamphlet Three Dragon Day (2015) won the Poetry Business Pamphlet Competition and was shortlisted for The Michael Marks Award. His new collection, The AQI, was published in October 2018.

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– Autumn 2018 survey response

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