Han Han’s Literary Magazine

If you’re wondering why Han Han’s blog hasn’t updated in nearly a month, here’s the probable reason. His literary magazine, 《独唱团》was recently released. You may not be aware of this because, according to this report quoted in the China Digital Times ((CDT is reason enough alone to hit up Freedur for a proxy.)), the media is not allowed to report on it or interview people about it.

Nevertheless, people were buzzing around Beijing when it was released earlier this month, and if bookstores are any indication, it’s selling quite well, as many have it displayed front and center in their literature sections or laid out in stacks with other featured new releases. I picked up a copy from such a stack yesterday and have begun to work my way through it. At my current rate of speed, you can expect my full review of the magazine to be hitting the internet sometime this October.

The magazine appears to be titled “Party” in English; perhaps a tongue-in-cheek shot at the authorities for having caused him so much trouble, forcing him to re-title the magazine and then later redo the cover as well.

The magazine — whose title might be loosely translated as “Solo Chorus” in English — now features an elegant brown cover with the title in the top left and the contents written across the bottom, ending with the price, 16 RMB.

I’ll leave any commentary on its contents for later, as I haven’t finished reading it yet. But if what I’ve read so far is any indication, it’s worth your 16元 if you’re the sort of person who enjoys short stories, occasional irreverence, and some very beautiful photographs.

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0 thoughts on “Han Han’s Literary Magazine”

  1. A portion of the magazine’s content, along with supplemental interviews and commentary, is available on the Rongshuxia website. Of course, a complete scanned version is downloadable from various online sources (along with the work of lots of other authors. according to this forum post about Baidu’s document archive — wonder if there’ll be the same sort of outcry we saw over Google’s book search service…)

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  2. @ jdmartinsen: Thanks, I figured it was probably online somewhere (or rather, everywhere) but wanted to encourage DMusial to actually buy it if he/she is in China. I haven’t tried reading any of the pieces online, but I think some things really are best read in print.

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  3. To be honest, I haven’t actually hunted down an online copy myself — it was sold out at newsstands the day it was released, but I was able to get one next-day-delivery from a vendor on Taobao.

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  4. Really? I didn’t see any in the newsstands around our building, then forgot about it till this past weekend. What did you think of it? I’m only about 20 pages in but really enjoying it so far (might just be because I’ve discovered I can get most of it without cracking a dictionary though…)

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  5. I just finished reading the lastest issue of Vogue China. In it there’s a lengthy interview with Han Han.

    My god you wouldn’t believe the internalized and self-righteous misogyny that man displays in the interview. His sexist tendencies were even discussed here if I remember correctly.

    And usually misogynistic straight Chinese male intellectuals are homophobes as well. (I’m just guessing so if you don’t agree with this point, move on.)

    I despise Sissy Chen, but her recent comments on Han Han that caused a stir in the blogosphere are spot on.

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  6. 所有人问所有人 is brilliant in both conception and execution. The rest of the magazine is well-produced but doesn’t really break new ground (really have to laugh at some of the comparisons to Jintian ahead of the launch). It’s neat to have all those writers together in one place, I suppose. I haven’t read the whole thing yet (and I’m not being very methodical about it). I liked the piece with the Chinese Braille title, and the bit about Jin Shengtan was pretty amusing. There’s stuff to like in Han Han’s piece, but I tend to agree with @urusai about the way he deals with women. A decade on, he’s still showing the same combination of apprehension, naive curiosity, and outright disdain that his high-schooler displayed in 三重门, and it makes some of his later work a little bit uncomfortable to read.

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