Chinese Literature - Li-hua Ying 2010
LIANG SHIQIU (1902—1987)
LIANG SHIQIU (1902—1987). Prose writer. A prominent scholar, translator, and lexicographer, Liang had studied in the 1920s at Colorado College, Columbia University, and Harvard University before returning to China to teach at Beijing University and Shandong University, among other institutions of higher learning. While at Harvard, he came under the influence of Irving Babbitt, whose theories of literature had a lasting influence on Liang. Diametrically opposed to the utilitarian brand of literature promoted by left-wing writers, Liang allied himself with intellectuals and writers such as Hu Shi and Xu Zhimo, who shared his belief in the aesthetic purpose of literature, pitting himself against Lu Xun and others in a heated debate about the function and direction of modern Chinese literature. He was a cofounder of the Crescent Society and began writing essays in the 1940s with his first collection published in 1949 entitled Yashe xiaopin (Sketches from a Refined Cottage). He continued to publish several more collections of essays after moving to Taiwan in 1949, where he taught English and served as dean of the College of Humanities at the National Taiwan Normal University until his retirement in 1966. Liang’s crowning achievements, however, are his translation of the complete works of Shakespeare, which took him nearly 40 years to finish, and an English-Chinese dictionary widely circulated in the Chinese-speaking world. An erudite scholar and literary critic, Liang was at home in both Chinese and English literary traditions, evident in his prolificacy in translation and scholarly and creative writings. Liang died in Taipei. See also MAY FOURTH MOVEMENT; NEW CULTURE MOVEMENT.