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Xiaolu Guo in conversation with Preti Taneja

‘When it comes to spinning light and shadow on the complexities of living, loving and language, Xiaolu Guo is one of the most valuable writers in the world’ Deborah Levy

The new memoir from prize-winning writer and filmmaker Xiaolu Guo offers an inventive and deeply humane vision of what it means to strive for a life of one’s own. Both playful and profound, Guo brings her trademark exploration of language (one of the meanings of the word ‘radical’ is the graphic component, or root, of Chinese characters) to bear on her own life, and creates a uniquely universal text.

Xiaolu Guo FRSL is a novelist, memoirist and filmmaker. Her novels include A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers (Penguin, 2008), I Am China (Penguin, 2014) and A Lover’s Discourse (Penguin, 2020) shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize 2020. Her memoir Once Upon A Time In The East won the National Book Critics Circle Award 2017 and was shortlisted for the RSL Ondaatje Prize. Films include How Is Your Fish Today (Sundance Official Selection), UFO In Her Eyes (TIFF) and She, A Chinese which won the Golden Leopard Award at the Locarno Festival.

Preti Taneja is Director of NCLA and Professor of World Literature and Creative Writing at Newcastle University.

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