Dr. Dong Isbister, Professor and Program Coordinator of WGS at UW-Platteville, has published an anthology, “Chinese Women Writers on the Environment: A Multi-Ethnic Anthology of Fiction and Nonfiction.”
This book’s genesis began in 2014 at a conference in Wisconsin entitled, “Gendered Planet: Ethics, Ecology, and Equity.” At the conference, Professor Isbister delivered a presentation on Sana’s story, “Dalema’s Sacred Tree.” After her presentation, she was asked by a member of the audience when she was going to translate the story.
Professor Isbister held a variety of roles in bringing this project to fruition over the past 5+ years. She managed the project, including communications with the publisher, China Writers Association, the writers, and the translators throughout the whole process. In addition, her roles also included editing and translating; she translated two pieces and co-translated four pieces for the anthology.
One recognition of the anthology is a translation grant awarded by Association for the Study of Literature and Environment. The anthology also won multiple university grants or LAE Dean’s Funds at UW-Platteville (2014-2019).
Congratulations, Professor Isbister, on this incredible accomplishment!
Below is an excerpt from the anthology’s introduction:
This edited collection of twenty-two pieces of ecologically oriented writing by contemporary female authors from thirteen different Chinese ethnic minorities were translated from the original Chinese into English (with two exceptions) by a host of translators under the direction of the three editors. The anthology is an expression of a hope that through translation into English we might expand the horizons of global literary study, ethnic literary study, environmental study, and the study of women writers. The voices found in this volume represent a range of ethnic groups that constitute smaller slices of the Chinese demographic puzzle: Daur, Evenki, Hui, Kazakh, Manchu, Mongolian, She, Tujia, Uyghur, Va, Xibo, Yi, and Zhuang.
Much has been written about the economic development of China since the 1970s, and this collection seeks to give a global voice to another kind of development: the rich and unprecedented flourishing of several generations of women writers in China. As a whole, these authors articulate subjects that reach deep into history and time yet also speak to the present—the changing demographics and social conditions that this economic and social development has set into motion.