Feeling the Pressure

Ha Jin, whose prose is as economical as his name, left his native China in 1985 to study English literature at Brandeis University. He rose to prominence in 1999 when his second novel, Waiting, won the National Book Award in the U.S., a first for a Chinese writer. The tale of a two-decade-delayed love affair between a married doctor and a nurse in a China slouching toward modernity, Waiting established Jin as the poet of dreams deferred. His follow up novel, The Crazed, is stylistically similar, but this time Jin has made his politics more explicit. Set in the heartbreaking spring...

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