The name Luo Yijun calls to mind a kind of absolute literature that transcends experience and creates experience. Born in Taipei in 1967, Lui Yijun started his writing career in college. He won the National Taiwan Literature Award in 2009 and the Dream of the Red Chamber Award in 2010. At their core, Luo’s works are about urban existence in modern Taipei, but he comes up with his own trajectories out of the concave continuities in a heterogeneity of experiences, video games, rumors, news events, Facebook posts, memories, dreams, letters, and readings. Luo’s polychromatic word-images mesh together to turn out fictional scenes full of complications, innuendos, and goosebump-inducing weirdness, fictional scenes that demand a reconstruction of everything you thought you knew. With his prodigious narrative ability, Luo has pioneered a uniquely fictional space-time that makes him one of the most original writer in Taiwan. Although Luo as a storyteller is a wildman, the man himself is humble: he claims that unlike those of his father’s generation, whose lives were filled with stories, he was born into an era of “experience deficiency.
Luo compares himself to Aesop’s crow in borrowed feathers. When God held a contest to find the most beautiful bird, a dazzling five-color bird stood out from the others, caught His eye and was crowned champion. However, upon closer scrutiny, the other contestants, including a peacock, a flamingo, a nightingale, a blue magpie, and an owl found their feathers among the plumage of the five-color bird. Incensed, they rushed toward it and retrieved their feathers. The five-color bird is humiliatingly exposed as a black crow. “Spencer Tunick (a nude photographer who appears as a character in Luo Yijun’s Xixia Lüguan or Xixia Inn) says this is my story. Sometimes people can’t tell when I’m writing from my own experience and when I’m borrowing from others. Like the crow that used borrowed feathers to reinvent itself in a dazzling new form, I borrow stories from others that I find magical and enthralling.” (Notes of an Experience Deficient Man). What the crow does not know is that it represents the origin of art, because art has always come from the cultivation of craftsmanship, never from inborn nature. A peacock is born to be a peacock, a flamingo to be a flamingo. Their appearances are merely God’s gift, a fulfillment of the nature they have been given. ”READ MORE
The Luo Yijun Digital Exhibition was established in 2016, the brain-child of Professor Lee Yulin, Director of the Research Center for Humanities and Social Sciences at National Chung Hsing University and Professor Chen Kuowei from the Institute of Taiwanese Literature. The website itself was created by a team from National Chung Hsing University. As indicated by the name, the website features Luo Yijun, showcasing the author, his work, and his life in a variety of different ways: you will find an interactive timeline of major events in his career, manuscripts, a list of his publications, the author’s reading notes, and bibliography. It is our hope to promote Taiwanese literature by presenting the writer, his writings, and related materials in digital format.
The digital team at National Chung Hsing University is grateful to Luo Yijun for allowing us to use his manuscripts, excerpts from his publications, pictures, and other such material. We also thank all who were involved in the creation of this digital exhibition. The copyright, ownership, and intellectual property rights of all content on this website, including text, pictures, and all audio-visual materials are either owned by the National Chung Hsing University Humanities and Social Sciences Research Center or used by permission from Luo Yijun. All rights are reserved; any unauthorized use is prohibited and offenders will be prosecuted. Unauthorized use includes but is not limited to downloading the content, revision, alterations, distribution, derivative work, and public dissemination.