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Academic collection launched to honor SISU scholars


24 December 2019 | By SESTA | copyedited by Deng Boyin

  • The launching ceremony

  • Jiyu Collection

A

lmost everyone in China knows the novel In the World by Maxim Gorky, but do you know who first translated it into Chinese? The answer is Wang Jiyu (1908-1981), one of the founders of Russian language teaching in the PRC, also the first President of Shanghai Foreign Language Institute (the predecessor of Shanghai International Studies University). On December 4th, 2019, SISU and the Commercial Press jointly launched the Jiyu Collection, a compilation of academic works by SISU scholars.

President Li Yansong noted that SISU, as the first foreign language higher learning institute established under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) after the founding of the PRC, has always committed to its mission of “preparing future global talents for all-round development to serve the needs of our nation, advancing social progress, and promoting heart-to-heart communication between China and the rest of the world.” In celebration of the 70th anniversary of SISU, the launching of the Collection in the name of the highly respected former president embodies the university’s renewal of its commitment to the spreading the legacy of the classics, the supporting of “Going Global” cultural strategy and the construction of a system of social sciences with distinctive Chinese features.

Among the first 31 volumes of the Collection are the works by Wang and other long-celebrated foreign language scholars at SISU. In addition to Wang’s translations and original writings, it also contains Fang Zhong’s works on Chaucer and his translation of Tao Yuanming’s prose and poetry and Zhang Zhenbang’s textbook on English grammar. Also featured in the Collection are the academic works and translations by some of the most influential SISU scholars, including Yang Xiaoshi, Dai Weidong, Wu Keli, Hou Weirui, Zhu Weilie, Chen Zhongyao, Wang Hong, Xie Tianzhen, and Ren Shengming.

It should be noted that the Collection also contains these scholars’ translation of foreign academic masterpieces and classic Chinese literature, which reflects the academic achievement by Chinese foreign studies scholars at the highest level. For instance, one of the featured contributors, the late Professor Yang Xiaoshi at SISU translated some one hundred Chinese movies into English, including beloved Chinese classics Xiao Hua, Stage Sisters, and Sparkling Red Star. Some of these translated and dubbed versions even became materials of foreign language teaching in parts of Africa.

SISU Vice President Zha Mingjian remarked that the Jiyu Collection represents not only SISU scholars’ decades of achievements, but also the university’s academic tradition and spiritual heritage. Its publication forged a solid foundation for SISU to continue its strive to become a world-class university with leading-edge disciplinary education.

Yu Dianli, general manager of the Commercial Press, commented that recently the Press sought to change its strategy from “Bringing in” to “Going Global”. The publication of the Collection is symbolic of the beginning of a full strategic cooperation between the Press and SISU and start of a new academic cultural brand with SISU characteristics and Chinese style.

Former SISU President Dai Weidong said that the publication of the Jiyu Collection was a motivation for every SISUer. Wang’s spirit of innovation and revolution will always push each and every one of SISUers to play a part in the “double first-class” construction. Zhu Weilie, a professor at SISU, stated that the launching of the Collection would inspire SISU’s academic and disciplinary development and serve as a bonding experience for all SISUers.

The article is translated by Chen Shifan and Gao Jiahui, and proofread by Wang Bo, members of the Translation Association of the School of English Studies (SESTA) at Shanghai International Studies University. For use of the content, please contact: ses_translators@163.com.

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Press Contact

SISU News Center, Office of Communications and Public Affairs

Tel : +86 (21) 3537 2378

Email : news@shisu.edu.cn

Address :550 Dalian Road (W), Shanghai 200083, China

Further Reading