Can Xue’s enchanting collection is full of mystery and secrets, 16 dreamlike stories that create their own uniquely beautiful reality. Translated by Karen Gernant and Chen Zeping.

I Live in the Slums combines elements of both Chinese materiality - the love of physical things - and Western abstract thinking. With this collection, Can Xue has created an immersive landscape that blends empirical fact and illusion, mixes the physical and spiritual, and probes the space between consciousness and unconsciousness. The stories bring readers to a place that is both readily familiar yet unmappable, highlighting the inherent unreliability in our relationship to the world around us.

Longlisted
The 2021 International Booker Prize
Published by
Yale University Press
Publication date
Can Xue

Can Xue

About the Author

Can Xue is the pseudonym of the renowned avant‑garde author Deng Xiaohua.
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Karen Gernant

Karen Gernant

About the Translator

I Live in the Slums is the fifth book by Can Xue translated by Karen Gernant and Chen Zeping.
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Chen Zeping

Chen Zeping

About the Translator

Chen Zeping is professor emeritus of Chinese linguistics at Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou, China.
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Other nominated books by Can Xue