Zheng Xiaoqiong [China, 1980]
When in 2007, Zheng Xiaoqiong came seemingly out of nowhere to win the Chinese Liqun Literature Award, she became a household name overnight. Very few people had been familiar with her work until this point, largely because as a migrant worker she barely had any ties with the literary world. This background features prominently in her work. It is precisely the combination of this perspective on pressing social issues, with imagery derived from the world of work and industry, and her keen aesthetic sense that makes her such a unique voice. Her poetry shows how the behemoth of industry makes people themselves into a part of the machinery: nameless, just a number at a conveyor belt, with no rights to speak of at all.
READING: Saturday 15 June, 20:20 hrs - Jurriaanse Zaal