Chi Zijian 遲子建

Chi Zijian was born in 1964 in Mohe, a city on China’s northernmost border. Located at latitude 53°N, Mohe is often called China's “North Pole”. There she grew up listening to folk tales and ghost stories around the fire, and developed a fondness for and respect of nature from an early age. She started writing in high school, and had her first story published in Northern Literature magazine when she was still in college.

Chi Zijian is the only writer to have won the prestigious Lu Xun Literary Award three times for outstanding accomplishment in short fiction. She also won the Mao Dun Literary Award, the highest honour for a novelist in China, for THE LAST QUARTER OF THE MOON, the first writer from northeast China to have done so.

Chi is not a prolific writer, but her output is steady and she is especially good at short fiction. She has written five novels to date: MANCHURIA is an historical novel about life in the short-lived Manchukuo during World War II. It was published in Japan by Kawade Shobo Shinsha. A CLOUDED LATE is Chi's tribute to her late husband, who died in a car crash. It is narrated by a dying dog as he recalls his life with six different masters. Known for her simple but emotionally powerful prose, Chi has published over thirty books. Her fiction has been translated into English, French, Italian and Japanese.


  1. Under the Tree (树下, 1991)
  2. Morning Bells in the Evening (晨钟响彻黄昏, 1994)
  3. Manchuria (伪满州国, 2000)
  4. A Clouded Light (越过云层的晴朗, 2003)
  5. The Last Quarter of the Moon (额尔古纳河右岸, 2006)

  1. Walking with Water (与水同行, 2002)
  2. Original Landscape (原始风景, 2008)
  3. All the Nights of the World (世界上所有的夜晚, 2008)
  4. Dancing (起舞, 2008)
  5. Sunset at Wanyao (日落碗窑, 2009)
  6. Ghost in the Paper (鬼魅丹青, 2010)


* Winner of the Zhuang Zhongwen Literary Award for Best Young Writer (1993)
* Winner of the Northeastern Literary Award for Morning Bells in the Evening (1995)
* Winner of the I Lu Xun Literary Award for “Cow-rail in Fog Month” (1996)
* Winner of the II Lu Xun Literary Award for “Washing in Clear Water” (2000)
* Recipient of the Suspended Sentence Fellowship of the James Joyce Foundation (2004)
* Participant of the Dublin Writers Festival (2004)
* Participant of the International Writing Program of University of Iowa (2005)
* Nominee of Chinese Literature Media Award for Best Novelist (2005)
* Winner of the IV Lu Xun Literary Award for “All the Nights of the World” (2006)
* Winner of the VII Mao Dun Literary Award for Right Side of the Argun (2008)
* Winner of the III Bing Xin Literary Award for best essay (2009)

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