CCHC Director Prof. Zhu Shoutong Participated in the Online Outstanding Scholars Lecture of Chinese Culture and Religion held by Confucius Institute of Hong Kong
On April 12, 2021, the Confucius Institute of Hong Kong, Hong Kong Polytechnic University held a lecture on the experience and challenges of The Story of the Stone in English through the online platform. The lecture invited Mr Pai Hsien-Yung and Ms. Chan Egan, the co-authors of The Story of the Stone – A Chapter-by-chapter Guide and Professor Zhu Shoutong, director of the Centre of Chinese History and Culture, University of Macau. The lecture attracted more than 300 people to watch, including undergraduates from the University of Macau, and other scholars and students from four places across the strait, referring to China’s mainland, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao.
Ms. Chan shared her experience with Mr Pai and her knowledge of The Story of the Stone. She has studied the Chinese and English versions of The Story of the Stone many times, but she did not fully understand the book until after reading the guide by Mr Pai. In addition, Ms Chan talked about the challenges encountered in writing the English guide of the book, such as the translation of the names of characters.
Ms. Chan Egan
Mr. Pai firstly reviewed the history he had met with Professor Zhu more than 30 years ago and his contacts with Professor Chan and his wife for nearly half a century. He said that he was very happy to discuss his favorite book The Story of the Stone with two old friends. Mr. Pai considered it as the Mount Everest in literature. Later, he shared his teaching experience at National Taiwan University. He spent three semesters analyzing the book in detail for the students and taught them his lifelong study and experience on the book.
Mr Pai Hsien-Yung
Professor Zhu highly praised Mr Pai’s promotion of The Story of the Stone as an outstanding contemporary writer. He believed that one of the important ways for a national classic to spread should be the interpretation of the national classics by outstanding writers and a contemporary interpretation. Professor Zhu called on the Chinese Reading Festival to attach importance to such literary and cultural phenomena. Professor Zhu also put forward some topics for discussion on the translation of names in The Story of the Stone and the annotations in it by Mr Pai and others.
Professor Zhu Shoutong
Professor Zhu further asked Mr. Pai if he would continue to work hard on this marvellous book after he has done great work like Pai Hsien-Yung Explains the Story of the Stone and The Story of the Stone – A Chapter-by-chapter Guide. Mr Pai answered with great interest that The Story of the Stone is such a great work that one cannot finish reading or analyzing it. Mr Pai said sincerely that for his lifelong work on it, he could only understand about 80 per cent of the book, which is not bad. As an outstanding writer, Mr Pai treated Chinese literary classics with such a modest attitude, which left a deep impression on readers and listeners.