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From Western Paradise to the Sea

  ——China-India Female Writers’ Live Dialogue in Changning District Library

"Maritime Female Writer" Literary Research Association, China National Import and Export Co., Ltd. and Changning District Library jointly held the "World Eye" Foreign Literature lecture series in, Shanghai Hongqiao International Library. This event invited Indian female writer Mishi Saran and Shanghai female writer Shu Xue for literature dialogue.

As a writer, news reporter and freelance journalist, Ms. Mishi Saran started to settle in Shanghai since 2006. Her master works include non-fiction masterpiece “the Figure to Follow the Monk” which depicts the pilgrimage of Xuanzang for Buddhist scriptures. Currently, she is creating a book titled “Shanghai in 1930s”. Ms Shu Xue is one of the representative Shanghai writers in 1970s, China Association member and Shanghai Writers Association council member. She ever won the Newcomer Award of “2007 Erdos Prize for Literature”.

At the very beginning, the lecture commented  on Ms. Mishi Saran’s masterpiece “the Figure to Follow the Monk”, during which Ms Mishi Saran introduced the whole story of her literary creation in Shanghai, and she exchanged with Ms Shu Xue their opinions about the friendship between Indian and Chinese people, the impression of the two nations in each other’s eyes. Ms. Mishi Saran also talked about the 1920s Indian literary giant Rabindranath Tagore’s visit to China and some much-told stories relating the friendships with Chinese writers. Then the dialogue of two writers expanded to Ms. Mishi Saran’s new works -“Shanghai in 1930s”, which captured great interests of the audience. Two writers summarized respectively the literary feedbacks and creations of those writers of different nationalities and ages towards the Golden Times - Shanghai in 1930s. In the eyes of Chinese people, “Shanghai in 1930s” represents a series of classic memories that is almost impossible to copy and pass over, while foreign authors are more interested at the complex social background, structures, composition and interaction effects of Chinese and foreign groups in that era. The audience also embraced high expectation towards Ms Mishi Saran’s new works. With a sense of humor they revealed their expectation that she may write with Wong Kar-wai‘s movie style. Finally, two writers also interacted with the readers in the live dialogue to share thoughts about “literary creation trend of internationalization ", " how to treat the Nobel Prize for Literature ," " the social status of Indian women and women writers ", " the reading promotion for young readers in China and India "and etc..

This literature dialogue opens a window of “India” to Shanghai readers, through which we found that though both nations are considered as ones among "the four ancient civilizations”, the mutual understanding between two neighboring countries is quite limited and narrow. It is also the original intention of Changning District Library in its attempts to introduce foreign cultural themed events, which lead us not only to understand our past and modern times, but also fully discover the world, digging beyond the world we live in a true dynamic atmosphere so that the literature truly becomes a bridge without national borders and let civilization go penetrate our hearts in a real sense.

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