Book Excerpt! Plum Shadows and Plank Bridge, By Mao Xiang and Yu Huai, translated and edited by Wai-yee Li

Wai-yee Li’s translations of these famous Chinese memoirs of romantic brio and pathos from the seventeenth century are a marvel of precision, elegance, and wit—a perfect match for the book’s sensual, tragic contents. Her brilliant annotations and supplemental translations help unlock a whole lost historical world of incomparable richness.

~Judith Zeitlin, University of Chicago

We continue in the spirit of romance with this excerpt from Plum Shadows and Plank Bridge: Two Memoirs About Courtesans, by Mao Xiang and Yu Huai, translated and edited by Wai-yee Li. These two writers chronicle their relationships with courtesans during the final years of the Ming Dynasty. This excerpt is of the poem “Yuanyuan’s Song,” by Wu Weiye, based on one of the most famous courtesans, Chen Yuanyuan. Enter our Valentine’s Day giveaway for a chance to win a copy of this work.

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