The Macau Literary Festival announced today that four writers including Jung Chang and Suki Kim would not attend this year’s edition scheduled to happen from March 10-25.
Jung Chang is the author of the bestselling memoire Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China, and two controversial biographies Mao: The Unknown Story and Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China. The first two books are still banned in China.
The organisers of the festival announced previously that Jung Chang would take part in the opening panel of The Script Road under the team “The Personal is Political”.
Another writer who dropped out of the festival is Korean American Suki Kim, who published the award-winning novel The Interpreter and a New York Times Bestselling literary nonfiction, Without You, There Is No Us: Undercover Among the Sons of North Korea’s Elite. Kim is the only writer ever to have lived undercover in North Korea for immersive journalism.
James Church, the author of five detective novels featuring a North Korean policeman, and Hyeonseo Lee, a North Korean defector who wrote The Girl with Seven Names, also won’t be able to attended the festival. According to the organisers, Lee has cancelled her visit to the Festival due to personal reasons.
Writer and painter Shan Sa is the latest confirmation of The Script Road programme. Born in Beijing, she left in 1990 for further studies in Paris. In 1997. she released her first novel in French, Gate of Celestial Peace. The novel won the Prix Goncourt for First Novel, the most prestigious literature prize of France. In 2001, she was awarded the Prix Goncourt des Lycéens for The Girl Who Played Go. Since then her works have been published in more than 30 languages. Her paintings have been exhibited in Paris, New York, Tokyo, Brussels, Geneva, Shanghai, Macau, Hong Kong and elsewhere.