|Died||October 18, 2014 98) (aged|
|Other names||Chinese :沙博理|
|Occupation||Actor, lawyer, translator, writer|
|Known for||Translation of Chinese novels of notable Chinese authors such as Ba Jin and Mao Dun into English. |
Became citizen of People's Republic of China.
Sidney Shapiro (Chinese :沙博理; pinyin :Shā Bólǐ) (December 23, 1915 – October 18, 2014) was an American born Chinese lawyer, translator, actor and writer who lived in China from 1947 to 2014. He lived in Beijing for over a half century and was a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Council. He was one of very few naturalized citizens of the PRC.
Shapiro was born in Brooklyn, New York City, New York. He was of Ashkenazi Jewish descent. He was a graduate of St. John’s University, New York.[ citation needed ]
Shapiro held citizenship of the People's Republic of China from 1963, before the Cultural Revolution, to the end of his life. He was a member of the People's Political Consultative Conference, a governmental assembly of the PRC which ostensibly provides a forum for input from non-Communist political organizations.
In 1941, Shapiro was a 32-year old Brooklyn-born Jewish lawyer and he had enlisted in the U.S. Army. He applied for French Language School but was sent to an Army Chinese-language school in San Francisco, California.
Shapiro's connections with China began during World War II, when he was serving in the United States armed forces. He was chosen to learn Chinese by the United States Army in preparation for a possible American landing in Japanese-occupied China. After attaining a law degree in the US, he went to China, arriving in Shanghai in 1947. There, he met his future wife, an actress named Fengzi (Phoenix), who was a supporter of the Communist Party of China prior to its ascent to power. Beginning in the Cultural Revolution, she spent 10 years under house arrest for her opposition to Mao's wife, Jiang Qing. [ citation needed ]She later became one of the most prominent drama critics in the People's Republic.
In 1958, Shapiro translated The Family a Chinese novel by Ba Jin or Pa Chin. Ba Jin is the pen name of Li Yaotang (aka Feigan) and he is one of the widely read Chinese writers of the 20th century. The translated novel was originally published by Foreign Languages Press (Beijing). Shapiro's translation was based on the 1953 People's Publishing House text, in which the author made corrections. The 1972 New York edition omits the article "the" from the title, which makes Family a more general concept rather than limiting it to this particular family. In her Editor's Note, Lang discusses the history of the text, pointing out that certain passages, the anarchist elements, had been deleted from the 1958 Foreign Languages Press edition. The Anchor edition restored three prefaces by the author, newly translated, as well as some of the omitted passages.
In 1997, after withdrawing the original version from publication for fear of offending Chinese authorities, his memoir I Chose China: The Metamorphosis of a Country & a Man was published.
Through his literary translations he has remained at the forefront of helping people overseas learn about China's past and present. His literary translations, which range from the classical to the modern, include the Ming Dynasty masterpiece Outlaws of the Marsh and the well-known 20th century outcries against bigotry and backwardness such as Ba Jin's The Family and Mao Dun's Spring Silkworms.
For nearly 50 years, he was employed by the state-run Foreign Languages Press (FLP) as a translator of works of Chinese literature. He is best known for his highly regarded English version of Outlaws of the Marsh, one of the most important classics of Chinese literature. FLP recently reissued Shapiro's translation as part of a bilingual collection called Library of Chinese Classics.
Shapiro was also an actor in many Chinese movies, typecast as the American villain.
In 1948, Shapiro married Fengzi (aka Phoenix), an actress. She was also a writer and magazine editor. Shapiro had a daughter.Phoenix died in 1996.
On October 18, 2014, Shapiro died in Beijing, China. He was 98.
On 26 December 2014 it was announced that the China International Publishing Group was establishing a Sidney Shapiro Research Center in honor of the translator to investigate model criteria for translation between Chinese and English.
The following is a list of notable Chinese authors translated by Shapiro.
Water Margin, also translated as Outlaws of the Marsh, Tale of the Marshes, All Men Are Brothers, Men of the Marshes or The Marshes of Mount Liang, is a 14th-century Chinese novel attributed to Shi Nai'an. Considered one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature, the novel is written in vernacular Chinese rather than Classical Chinese.
Cao Yu was a Chinese playwright, often regarded as China's most important of the 20th century. His best-known works are Thunderstorm (1933), Sunrise (1936) and Peking Man (1940). It is largely through the efforts of Cao Yu that the modern Chinese "spoken theater" took root in 20th-century Chinese literature.
Li Yaotang, better known by his pen name Ba Jin and also known as Li Pei Kan, was a Chinese author and political activist best known for his novel The Family. He is considered to be one of the most important and widely read Chinese writers of the 20th century.
Jews and Judaism in China are predominantly composed of Sephardi Jews and their descendants. Other Jewish ethnic divisions are also represented, including Ashkenazi Jews, Mizrahi Jews and a number of converts.
The Kaifeng Jews are members of a small Jewish community in Kaifeng, in the Henan province of China, who had largely assimilated into Chinese society due to centuries of cultural suppression and intermarriage, while preserving some Jewish traditions and customs. Their origin and time of arrival in Kaifeng are a matter of debate among experts.
Sidney Rittenberg was an American journalist, scholar, and Chinese linguist who lived in China from 1944 to 1980. He worked closely with Mao Zedong, Zhu De, Zhou Enlai, and other leaders of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) during the Chinese Communist Revolution, and was with these central Communist leaders at Yan'an. He witnessed first-hand much of what occurred at upper levels of the CCP and knew many of its leaders personally, approving of the crackdown on dissidents Later, he was imprisoned in solitary confinement, twice
Israel Epstein was a Polish-born Chinese journalist and author. He was one of the few foreign-born Chinese citizens of non-Chinese origin to become a member of the Communist Party of China.
Muhammad Ma Jian was a Hui-Chinese Islamic scholar and translator, known for translating the Qur'an into Chinese and stressing compatibility between Marxism and Islam.
Jin Liqun is a Chinese politician, banker, and professor. He is currently the President of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). He was formerly the Chairman of China International Capital Corporation, the Vice President of the Asian Development Bank, and the Vice Minister of Finance of the People's Republic of China.
Ji Xianlin was a Chinese Indologist, linguist, paleographer, historian and writer who has been honored by the governments of both India and China. Ji was proficient in many languages including Chinese, Sanskrit, Arabic, English, German, French, Russian, Pali and Tocharian, and translated many works. He published a memoir, The Cowshed: Memories of the Chinese Cultural Revolution, about his persecution during the Cultural Revolution.
Spring Silkworms is a novella by the Chinese author Mao Dun about the experience of Chinese villagers engaging in sericulture.
Xu Yuanchong is a translator, best known for translating Chinese ancient poems into English and French. He has been a professor at Peking University since 1983.
The Family is a semi-autobiographical novel by Chinese author Ba Jin, the pen-name of Li Feigan (1904-2005). His most famous novel, it chronicles inter-generational conflict between old ways and progressive aspirations in an upper-class family in the city of Chengdu, a prosperous but provincial city in the fertile Sichuan basin in the early 1920s following the New Culture Movement. The novel was wildly popular among China's youth and established the author as a leading voice of his generation.
The Translators Association of China (TAC) is a national association for translation studies in China. Founded in the 1980s TAC was part of the academic response to the national Economic Reform in 1978. The incumbent President of TAC's 6th Executive Committee is the former Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing, who in the meantime chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee of China.
Li Yueran was chief Russian-language interpreter and translator of the CPC Central Committee of the People's Republic of China. From August 1949 to May 1965, Li served successively as translator for Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, Zhou Enlai, Deng Xiaoping, Chen Yun, Peng Zhen, Chen Yi, Bo Yibo and Li Fuchun, and in 2001 he published his memoirs A Record of the Personal Experiences of the Sino-Soviet Diplomacy . He joined Beijing International Studies University as professor of Russian Studies in 1965, and later served as Vice President.
Li Shijun was a Chinese author, editor and translator who elected as a committee member of Akademio de Esperanto since 1983 and reelected in 1992, 2001 and 2010. He was a member of the China Democratic League.
Chinese Literature, in some years Chinese Literature: Fiction, Poetry, Art, was an English-language literary magazine of Chinese literature in translation. It was founded in 1951 by Yeh Chun-chan (叶君健), Sidney Shapiro, Yang Xianyi, and Gladys Yang. The headquarters was in Beijing. In 1956, Chinese Literature was incorporated into the state-run Foreign Languages Press. Publication ceased in 2000, but newer contents appeared on its website for a time.
Feng Jiren, known professionally as Fengzi, also known as Feng Fengzi, was a Chinese actress, writer, literary editor, and dramatist. Her second husband was the American-born translator Sidney Shapiro.
Jin Di was a Chinese translator. He was the first Chinese translator who translated James Joyce's Ulysses into Chinese language, a project that took 16 years to complete.
Liu Deyou is a Chinese politician and translator.