Past Event

Portrait of an Artist as a Young Woman

December 12, 2018
7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
4, rue de Chevreuse, 75006

Lecture by Xiaolu Guo, novelist, essayist, filmmaker, and Fellow with the Institute for Ideas and Imagination.

In this seminar, Xiaolu will be speaking about her journey as an immigrant from China to Britain, but also her life as a migrant in southern China during and after the Cultural Revolution in the 70s and 80s. In particular she will discuss being a novelist in a second language (English) after 30 years living in China, and how she tries to create a hybrid language to write and to make films. Xiaolu attempts, as Roland Barthes would put it, to find a new language in order to escape the old language – censorship and national identity. Xiaolu, who is both a novelist and filmmaker, will show clips from her films and discuss her books She will demonstrate the possibilities of artistic expression and freedom that falls between a collective history and a personal narrative.

This lecture is part of the "Wednesdays at the Institute" lecture series organized by the Institute for Ideas & Imagination.

Xiaolu Guo

Xiaolu Guo is a Chinese/British novelist, essayist and filmmaker. Her most notable novels are 'A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers' (Shortlisted for Orange Prize for Fiction), UFO In Her Eyes, Village of Stone, and I Am China (a NPR’s Best Book of the Year). She also directed several feature films including How is Your Fish Today (Sundance Official Selection) and UFO in Her Eyes. Her feature film She a Chinese received the highest prize The Golden Leopard award at Locarno Film Festival 2009. Her recent memoir Once Upon a Time in the East is a Costa Book Award shortlist and won the National Book Critics Circle Award 2018. She is named as a Granta’s Best of Young British Novelist. She divides her time between Berlin and London.