Writer Liao Yiwu fled China

by Olivia Stransky    /  July 16, 2011  / No comments




Liao Yiwu Photo: Badische Zeitung

Liao Yiwu, an internationally acclaimed writer best known for his work The Corpse Walker, successfully fled China on July 6th.

Sampsonia Way first covered Liao’s struggles in May, 2011: He has been denied exit visas fourteen times since 1999, imprisoned for four years in 1990, and his work is consistently banned in China.

In an interview with Philip Gourevitch for The New Yorker, Liao discussed the publishing ban placed on him by the Chinese government, “The police told me that if I publish more of my work abroad, it won’t be easy- [they said] if you do it again, you will be disappeared for quite a while, you’ll get put away for as long as Liu Xiaobo.”

Now that Liao Yiwu is in Germany, two more of his works can be published. One, Testimonials: The Witness of the 4th of June, is a memoir of the time Liao spent in prison following the Tiananmen Square massacre. The other is entitled God is Red: The Secret Story of How Christianity Survived and Flourished in Communist China.

But Liao Yiwu is not a refugee. “Never. I’m excited about political developments in China, and looking forward to a Jasmine Revolution. I am quite sure that Hu Jintao may be a refugee some day, but not Liao Yiwu,” he said to Gourevitch.

“In 2012, the leadership will change in Beijing, and I’m looking forward to a new government with the hope that I may then go back to China,” Liao Yiwu added.

China’s Forbidden News, an online news program that describes itself as “providing the news that China won’t,” posted this video featuring Liao Yiwu:

Read “Liao Yiwu Escapes to Germany.”

Read the New Yorker’s article on Liao Yiwu.

About the Author

Olivia Stransky is an editorial assistant and video editor for Sampsonia Way. She received her B.A. in literature and film from Bard College at Simon’s Rock. While a student, she worked as the editor-in-chief of Glacial Erratic, Simon’s Rock’s literary and arts magazine. After graduating she received a grant to serve as a Fulbright Scholar in Slovakia, where she taught English literature and conversation at Univerzita Komenského in Bratislava.

View all articles by Olivia Stransky

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