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Book Cover for: The Red Wind Howls, Tsering Dondrup

The Red Wind Howls

Tsering Dondrup

A remarkable novel by one of Tibet's foremost authors, The Red Wind Howls is a courageous and gripping portrayal of Tibetan suffering under Mao's regime. The story delves deep into forbidden history, spanning the famine of the Great Leap Forward, the Cultural Revolution, and, most taboo of all, the 1958 Amdo rebellion when Tibetans rose in armed revolt against the Chinese state. Tsering Döndrup self-published the book in 2006, because no publisher would risk accepting it. When the authorities caught wind, all copies were confiscated and the author faced severe reprisals. He lost his job as head of the local archives, his passport was confiscated, and he has been under close surveillance ever since.

This powerful novel is largely set in the punitive labor camps to which Tibetans were sent after the failed rebellion, where many perished from starvation or forced labor. Inside and outside the camps, it depicts with dark humor a world of informers, cruelty, and score settling, against the backdrop of immeasurable environmental devastation and the destruction of traditional Tibetan ways of life. The novel draws on extensive interviews conducted by the author, and the rhythms of oral storytelling are reflected in its fragmented narrative style, which jumps back and forth between periods and events. An unparalleled account of the Chinese Communist Party's takeover of Tibet, The Red Wind Howls is both a richly imaginative work of fiction and a vital piece of historical testimony.

Book Details

  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publish Date: Feb 25th, 2025
  • Pages: 392
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 0.00in - 0.00in - 0.00in - 0.00lb
  • EAN: 9780231213738
  • Categories: World Literature - Asia (General)World Literature - China - 21st Century

About the Author

Tsering Döndrup is one of modern Tibet's most celebrated writers. His fiction has been translated into numerous languages, and he is the recipient of several literary awards--though none domestically since the release of this novel, which brought him intense scrutiny from the Chinese state. The Red Wind Howls remains his only major work not published in China.

Christopher Peacock is assistant professor of East Asian studies at Dickinson College. Among his translations are Tsering Döndrup's The Handsome Monk and Other Stories (Columbia, 2019) and Tsering Yangkyi's Flowers of Lhasa (2022).

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