Chinese Comics in Translation

Chinese Comics in Translation #

A Word or Two About Translating Lianhuanhua #

To provide contemporary readers and researchers with a glimpse into the vast Chinese comic culture, the ChinaComx project publishes a number of exemplary lianhuanhua from the Mao and early post-Mao years with English translations on this webpage. We hope that these translations will spur further interest and research into this diverse, relevant and, very often, entertaining medium.

During the Mao years, Beijing Foreign Languages Publishing House published translations of comics into various foreign languages. In addition, the 1970s saw a few translations published outside China (most notably a translation into Italian published by Gino Nebiolo et al and retranslated into English and German; and a translation of excerpts of lianhuanhua into German prepared by Wolfgang Bauer):

  • I Fumetti di Mao (edited by Nebiolo, Gino, Jean Chesneaux, Umberto Eco), Bari: Laterza & Figli, 1971.

  • Das Mädchen aus der Volkskommune (translated from Italian by Arno Widman, with an introduction by Gino Nebiolo and commentaries by Jean Chesneaux and Umberto Eco): Reinbek: Rowohlt, 1971.

  • The People’s Comic Book: Red Women’s Detachment, Hot on the Trail and Other Chinese Comics (translated from Italian by Endymion Wilkinson and Frances Frenaye, with an introduction by Gino Nebiolo), New York: Anchor Press, 1972.

  • Chinesische Comics: Gespenster, Mörder, Klassenfeinde (translated and edited by Wolfgang Bauer), Düsseldorf: Eugen Diederichs Verlag, 1976.

Today, more lianhuanhua in translation can be found online:

…as well as on this website – with new translations coming soon!

Acknowledgements #

The translations published here until 2023 originated as joint translation projects by students at the Institute of Chinese Studies, University of Freiburg, supervised by Lena Henningsen. The webpage was set up by Duncan Paterson, Gu Qin and Damian Mandzunowski. We acknowledge the support of the ERC-funded project “The Politics of Reading in the People’s Republic of China” (READCHINA, grant agreement no. 757365). Students from FU Berlin, supervised by Dominik Weihrauch, also contributed translations.

Special thanks go to our colleagues Matthias Arnold and Hanno Lecher from the Centre for Asian and Transcultural Studies (CATS), Heidelberg University, for providing us with high resolution scans of the comics which are part of the Seifert collection.

Since 2024, the webpage is maintained by the ERC-funded project “Comics Culture in the People’s Republic of China” (ChinaComx, grant agreement no. 101088049) at the Institute of Chinese Studies, Heidelberg University.

We have taken much effort to contact the publishers of the respective comicsin order to acquire permission by the copyright holder to publish the pages online. We regret that we have not received responses to our inquiries. If you believe that copyrights are not being respected, please send us an email message. We will respond as soon as possible and will work with you to either accredit the material correctly or remove it entirely.