Han Han

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Han Han
韩寒
Han Han 2.jpg
Born (1982-09-23) September 23, 1982 (age 31)
Shanghai, China
Occupation Rally driver, novelist, short story writer, essayist, blogger, singer
Nationality Chinese
Notable works Triple Door (三重门) (2000)
Website
http://blog.sina.com.cn/twocold

Han Han (born September 23, 1982) is a Chinese professional rally driver, best-selling author, singer, creator of Party, One (App magazine) and China's most popular blogger[1][2][3] He has published five novels to date, and is represented by the Hong Kong based Peony Literary Agency.[4] He is also involved in music production. In May 2010, Han Han was named one of the most influential people in the world by Time magazine.[5] In September 2010, British magazine New Statesman listed Han Han at 48th place in the list of "The World's 50 Most Influential Figures 2010".[6] In June 2010, Han Han was interviewed by CNN as China's rebel writer who has become the unofficial voice for his generation.[7]

Early life and increasing prominence[edit]

Han's first essay, Unhappy Days (不快乐地混日子), was published when he was attending junior middle school.[8] He was admitted to Shanghai's Song Jiang No. 2 High School (上海市松江二中) based on his sporting achievements. During his first year of high school (1999), Han won first prize in China's New Concept Writing Competition with his essay, Seeing Ourselves in a Cup (杯中窥人), on the Chinese national character. Failing seven subjects at the year-end examination,[8] Han was retained for a year in school. This incident was reported in the media and ignited a heated debate on China's "quality education" (素质教育) policy, whether holistic or specialised learning should be implemented in schools, and other educational issues. Following another seven subject failure in the senior middle school second year examinations, Han quit school.[8]

After dropping out of school, Han worked on a series of essays – One Degree Below Freezing (零下一度), Press Release 2003 (通稿 2003), And I Drift (就这么飘来飘去), and Miscellaneous Essays (杂的文). His essays were accepted into various publications. Han's first novel, Triple Door (三重门), on life as a third-year junior school student in Shanghai, raised his prominence in China outside Shanghai. With over twenty million copies printed, this novel is China's bestselling literary work in the last 20 years. Other novels – Like a Speeding Youth (像少年啦飞驰), Riot in Chang'an City (长安乱), A Fortress (一座城池), Glory Days (光荣日), His Kingdom (他的国) were also published during this time.

Fueled by his love of racing, Han became a professional rally driver and wrote less frequently. However, he continued to blog on current affairs, with some articles attracting a large number of readers and sparking intense debates. Han's blog has registered well over 300 million hits, the largest online following of a personal blog in China.[1][9]

In February 2005, a Hollywood movie was planned with the script to be based on Chinese writer Xie Hang's novel, Dysmenorrhoea (痛经), and filming to take place in a northern Chinese city. As Han's image suited him to play the male lead role, the Chinese partner company recommended him for the role to the American producers. When media outlets asked Han for his views on this matter, he replied, "I have yet to receive this invitation, but basically I would reject it." He explained, "It doesn't matter that this is a Hollywood movie, as my decision would depend on who's playing the female lead." On hearing that the script was about the forbidden love between a boy and his female teacher, Han laughed and rejected the role, saying, "This makes it even more difficult for me, I will not play such a role."[10]

Han is also involved in music production. His debut album, R-18 (十八禁, restricted to 18 and above), was released in September 2006, with all lyrics self-composed.

Controversies[edit]

The Han-Bai controversy[edit]

On 2 March 2006, Chinese literary critic and bookseller Bai Ye (白烨) published a blog post entitled, Status and Future of the Post-80 Generation (”80后“现状与未来), a harsh criticism of the works of writers born in the 1980–1989 period. Han responded critically with his online article The "Literary Circle" Is Bullshit, Don't Act F**king Pretentious (文坛是个屁 谁都别装逼). This exchange escalated into the "Han-Bai controversy", with both sides arguing on issues such as the post-80 classification, whether the works of post-80s qualified as literature and whether post-80 writers should be considered real writers.[11]

On 4 March 2006, Bai published an online article entitled My Declaration – a Reply to Han Han (我的声明 – 回应韩寒), stating that Han's articles in this exchange had crossed the boundaries of literary debate into the realm of humiliation and personal attack.[12] Subsequently, writer Lu Tianming (陆天明), his director son Lu Chuan (陆川), and musician Gao Xiaosong (高晓松), entered the debate, which became the focus of the online community for a time. Han debated with the above personalities on his blog. The debate finally concluded with Bai, Lu Tianming, Lu Chuan, and Gao shutting down their personal blogs.[13][14][15]

Han against Modern Poetry[edit]

Questioning the value of modern Chinese free verse, Han posted a blog article on 26 September 2006 entitled Why do modern Chinese poetry and poets still exist? (现代诗和诗人为什么还存在). In this and other related articles, he parodied modern Chinese poets including the late Xu Zhimo (徐志摩) and the late Hai Zi (海子), igniting a controversy involving poets such as the Lower Body Poet Shen Haobo, Yang Li (杨黎), Yi Sha (伊沙), and Dong Li (东篱).[16]

Han-Zheng controversy[edit]

On 10 April 2007, Han criticised rock singer Zheng Jun's (郑钧) capriciousness in a blog post entitled Some Recent Arrangements (最近的一些安排), igniting a debate between the two.[17][18] In 2006, Zheng condemned the Super Girl singing competition (超级女声) as being "unbearably disgusting",[19] but participated in the judging for a similar competition Super Boy (快乐男声) in 2007.

Ghostwriting allegation[edit]

On 15 January 2012, the blogger, technology entrepreneur, and former Baidu employee Mai Tian alleged in a blog post that the majority of Han's work was produced by a team of ghostwriters. Mai Tian claimed that Han Han's early work, including Triple Door, was in fact produced by Han's father, Han Renjun, a literature aficionado who was forced to leave university due to his condition of Hepatitis B. In addition, Mai Tian accused Han's publisher Lu Jinbo of leading a ghostwriting team that produced and published most of Han's work; Mai also questioned how Han was able to become a nationally acclaimed writer while maintaining fitness to participate in many high-level rally races. Han categorically denied the claims in a blog post dated 16 January 2012, and Mai Tian had since removed the post from his blog and formally apologized to Han on 18 January 2012.[20]

On 16 January 2012, the Chinese scientific author and anti-fraud crusader Fang Zhouzi published a blog post, in which Fang concurred with Mai Tian and further raised questions on the plausibility of Han's works. Despite Mai Tian's retraction of his statements against Han, Fang continued to assert that Han's work was produced by ghostwriters. Han again denied Fang's claims and sued Fang for defamation on 29 January 2012. Besides Fang, Han also sued a man named Liu Mingze, who is said to have forwarded an article claiming that Han's work was produced by a team of ghostwriters. However, Han withdrew his prosecution a few days after the prosecution was accepted by the Putuo courthouse of Shanghai. Later, in an interview with a reporter, Han admitted that the person named Liu Mingze was actually a friend of his. Han sued this person so that the prosecution can be accepted by the Putuo courthouse since Liu Mingze was living in the zone of Putuo.

Later Mai Tian came back to support Fang's statements against Han.[21][22]

On Nov 17, 2012, a blogger published his finding, searching through website archive, he discovered some of the articles allegedly written by Han were initially posted on Han's father's blog, these posts were removed later. [23]

Setup of online bookstore and magazine[edit]

On 19 April 2009, Han launched his online bookstore, Han Han's Bookstore, on the Taobao online shopping marketplace (淘宝网). The bookstore site stated that it would sell only Han's original autographed books.[24][25] As the number of sales transactions on Han Han's Bookstore was unusually large, the online system erroneously classified these as false transactions and attempts at credit fraud, leading Taobao to investigate the issue.

On 1 May 2009, Han posted an article on his blog entitled Request for articles, recruitment, article fees and article submission email address for a new magazine.[26] The post mentioned that Han would be setting up a magazine, informing the email addresses for article submission, response to recruitment ads, and advertising offers, but without revealing the magazine's title to prevent illegal copying. The blog post also mentioned that the writer of the selected cover story, if the story had not been previously published, would get up to RMB 2,000 per 1,000 characters in article fees. This would be 10 to 40 times of the standard rate in China's publishing industry,[27] and 2 to 4 times higher than what China's top magazine would pay China's top writer for an article. Writers of previously unpublished non-cover story articles in the magazine would be paid RMB 1,000 per 1,000 characters, 10 to 20 times higher than standard rates in the publishing industry. As for previously-published articles or selected extracts from articles, the rate would be RMB 500 per 1,000 characters, which would be about 15 times the standard rates.[27][28] Contributors of photographs would be paid up to RMB 5,000 per photograph.[27]

Han also invited article submissions for a "braindead" (脑残) column, deliberately publishing articles that the magazine disagreed with or were not up to standards. The rate for such articles would be RMB 250 per 1,000 characters. 250 (Chinese: 二百五) is a Chinese slang with the same meaning of "You idiot".[29] Han gave the rationale for including this column:

Every issue of the magazine would include 2 to 3 articles with the worst viewpoints or the lowest standards of writing, as examples of articles which the magazine completely disagreed with or found the most unsuitable. These articles could be stupid, against humanity, against common sense, against righteousness or anti-freedom. In conformance with the standards of these articles, the writers would be paid a relatively low RMB 250 per 1,000 words if compared with other types of articles, still a high rate if compared to publishing industry standards. I had reasons for deciding on this rate.

Han Han [30]

Within five days of putting up the blog post, Han received over 10,000 article submissions from across China, and also a few thousand résumés. Interestingly, there were several articles of the types which Han had expressly forbidden from submission, such as cut and paste jobs, pornographic literature and dissertations. Han expressed his exasperation with these and declared that such articles would not be published.[31]

Han's setup of his magazine received widespread attention, with editors proclaiming that the higher fees enabled the writing profession to regain a measure of financial independence and dignity[32] One journalist even commented that Han had completed his transformation from a rebellious youth into a full-fledged intellectual.[33]

Due to certain publishing and circulation restrictions in China, Han's magazine, which was originally planned for publication in August 2009, remained unpublished for some time.[34] One of the delays was reportedly because of an article that detailed the blacklisting of actors.[35] On July 6, 2010, his magazine Party (独唱团) was finally published. According to the publisher, the magazine became the most popular book on Amazon.cn less than 10 hours after pre-selling.[36]

However, it only lasted one issue. In December, 2010, Global Times, a state-linked newspaper, reported "Han Han's magazine dies". The paper reported: "Han went through more than 10 publishers to try and save that content and may have planned to include in the second issue." [37]

On June 11, 2012, Han Han published his own digital magazine "One(一个)" with his old editororial board of the “Party(独唱团)“ magazine. He first published ios app, and then was able to launch the Android version "One" app on November 28, 2012. As stated in his foreword of the "One" magazine, he wishes his readers to take off a few minutes everyday to read and think. The basic frame of this magazine is to offer one picutre, one article, and one Q&A column everyday.[38] Faced with critics saying he was not directly talking about democracy and the government this time, he said he felt "tired" of the repetitive political discussion on the web, so he decided to focus on editing a good magazine this time.[39]

Rally racing career[edit]

After Han turned professional as a rally driver, there were rumours that he had encountered financial difficulties.[40] Han himself admitted that writers and race car drivers in China earned less compared to those in other professions. Furthermore, his only income source was from book royalties as he was not involved in other revenue generating activities.[41] However, he continued to race as it gave him a sense of achievement. Winning prizes also enabled him to prove to himself that he was a well-rounded learner.[42] As Han stated in a media interview in 2007:

My income is from book royalties. I don't have a head for business and stocks, and I don't invest in trust funds. Racing is an expensive activity, and this frequently causes my family financial difficulties. I don't take part in [other] revenue generating activities, and I decline many such offers every year. [Taking advantage of racing-related] advertising opportunities would earn me more than RMB 3 million, but I'm afraid that once I get started in this, I would not be able to stop.

Han Han [41]

The following highlights some of Han's achievements in his racing career:

  • 2003: Raced for Beijing Extreme Speed Racing Team (北京极速车队) in the China Rally. Achieved 6th in the Shanghai race, 8th in the Changchun race and 6th in the Beijing race, all in the Group N category.
  • 2004: Group N 7th position for the Shanghai race, 4th position for the all-China race.
  • 2004 June: Joined Yunnan Red River Racing Team (云南红河车队).
  • 2004: Took 1st position in the Formula BMW Asia Qualifying Race (亚洲宝马方程式资格赛). Received scholarship money of USD 50,000.
    • Entered the annual Formula BMW race, achieved 7th in the Bahrain race and 1st in the Rookie Cup.
    • 8th in the Malaysia Race, 2nd in the Rookie Cup.
    • 7th in the Shanghai race, 2nd in the Rookie Cup.
    • 6th in the Japan race, 1st in the Rookie Cup.
  • 2005: Joined Shanghai Volkswagen 333 Racing Team (上海大众333车队).
  • 2005: Participated in the China Rally 1.6L Category. Achieved 4th in the Shanghai race, 4th in the Guizhou race, 4th in the Liupanshui race, and 4th in the Kunming race.
  • 2005: Participated in the China Circuit Championship Production Car 1600cc Category (中国汽车场地锦标赛 中国量产车1600cc组). Took 1st position in the Zhuhai race, 2nd position in the Shanghai race, 3rd position in the Beijing race and 1st position in the Shaoguan race. Won overall 2nd prize for 2005.
  • 2006: Raced for Shanghai Volkswagen 333 Racing Team. Won 3rd prize in the Shanghai race of the China Circuit Championship 1600cc Category, and 2nd prize in the China Rally.
  • 2007: Raced for Shanghai Volkswagen 333 Racing Team, obtained 1st prize in the China Circuit Championship 1600cc Category.
  • 2009: Han participated in the 2009 Rally Australia, a round of the World Rally Championship (WRC).
  • 2010:
  • 2011: Han raced for Subaru Rally Team China
  • 2012: He won the Chinese Rally Championship with Subaru Rally Team China after also winning the Zhangye International Rally

After his experiences at the WRC Rally Australia in 2009, he wrote a blog post entitled Report on supervision and guidance work in preparation for the WRC in Australia (赴澳大利亚监督指导世界拉力锦标赛的工作报告), using irony to express dissatisfaction with China's standards of race management, economic conditions, political consciousness of the population, etc. in comparison with Australia.[43]

Han Han competing at the WRC Repco Rally Australia 2009

Music[edit]

R-18 is Han Han's first album. It was released on September 26, 2006 by ShangHai ToWing Culture Development Co., Ltd.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Lyrics Music Length
1. "最好的事情" (The Best Things) Han Han (韩寒) Chang Shilei (常石磊) 4:07
2. "私奔" (Elopement) Han Han (韩寒) An Dong,Qi Fang (安栋、齐放) 3:30
3. "偶像" (Idol) Han Han (韩寒) Liu Tong (刘彤) 4:12
4. "春光" (Spring Day) Han Han (韩寒) Liu Tong (刘彤) 4:10
5. "混世" (Bumming) Han Han (韩寒) Liu Tong (刘彤) 4:14
6. "空城计" (Empty Fort Strategy) Han Han (韩寒) Wei Zhishu(未知数) 3:53
7. "最差的时光" (The Worst Time) Han Han (韩寒) Chang Shilei (常石磊) 3:20
8. "无题" (Untitled) Han Han (韩寒) An Yang, An Dong (宋阳、安栋) 4:01
9. "追梦人" (Dreamer) Lo Ta-yu (罗大佑) Lo Ta-yu (罗大佑) 4:15
10. "我" (I) Albert Leung (林夕) Leslie Cheung (张国荣) 3:25
Total length:
39:27

Filmography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Hille, Kathrin (January 14, 2010). "Daring blogger tests the limits". Financial Times. Archived from the original on January 16, 2010. 
  2. ^ "Han Han seizes blogging crown from Xu Jinglei". Danwei. September 26, 2008. Retrieved 2009-02-14. 
  3. ^ Tatlo, Didi (May 13, 2010). "In Search of a Modern Humanism in China". The New York Times. 
  4. ^ "Our Authors". Peony Literary Agency. Retrieved 9 January 2012. 
  5. ^ "The 2010 TIME 100". time.com. Retrieved May 21, 2010. 
  6. ^ "48. Han Han - 50 people that matter 2010". New Statesman. Retrieved 26 October 2010. 
  7. ^ "Han Han: China's rebel blogger". CNN Talk Asia. 2010-06-04. 
  8. ^ a b c "Growing amidst controversy: the non-conformist young talent Han Han (在争议中成长"偏才少年"韩寒档案)" (in Zh-hans). Huicongnet (慧聪网). 2009-02-01. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  9. ^ "China's Literary Bad Boy" by Simon Elegant in TIME Asia, vol.174, no.17, November 2, 2009, p.28
  10. ^ "Hollywood considers Han Han for lead role in "forbidden love" movie (好萊塢"不倫男主角"鎖定韓寒)" (in Zh-hant). Xinhuanet (新華網). 2005-02-02. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  11. ^ "Argument between Bai Ye and Han Han escalates (白烨韩寒"骂战"升级)" (in Zh-hans). South China City News (南方都市报). 2006-03-24. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  12. ^ "Han Han's rebuke of Bai Ye may constitute personal humiliation (韩寒"网骂"白烨涉嫌人格侮辱惹纠纷)" (in Zh-hans). Wangyi (网易). 2006-03-06. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  13. ^ "Han Han vs Bai Ye and Gao Xiaosong: A summary of the blog debates (单挑白烨、火拼高晓松 韩寒"骂战"大盘点[图])" (in Zh-hans). Eastday (东方网). 2008-09-24. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  14. ^ "Han Han's irrationality vs Lu Chuan's impulsiveness (韩寒的不理智VS陆川的冲动)" (in Zh-hans). Dajiangnet (大江网). 2006-03-25. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  15. ^ "Bai Ye shies from the fight, Han Han celebrates victory (扫文坛白烨怯战 祭花圈韩寒凯旋)" (in Zh-hans). Heluo Xingchen Net (河洛星辰网). 2006-05-01. Retrieved 2009-10-10. [dead link]
  16. ^ "Han Han battles on poetry scene after defeating Bai Ye (韩寒炮轰白烨后开战现代诗坛:众诗人下半身写作)" (in Zh-hans). Sichuan News Net (四川新闻网-成都晚报-西部网). 2006-10-08. Retrieved 2009-06-10. 
  17. ^ "Zheng Jun unaffected by Han Han's rebuke, continues to rock (郑钧被韩寒痛骂不受影响 大唱摇滚high到底)" (in Zh-hans). Sohu (搜狐). 2007-04-17. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  18. ^ "Zheng Jun – inside and outside the realm of music, an entertainer through and through (第159期主打:郑钧 音乐内外,娱乐致死)" (in Zh-hans). Sohu (搜狐). 2007-11-23. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  19. ^ "Zheng Jun replies to rumours, refuses to judge in Super Girl (郑钧正面回应种种传闻 坚决不做06"超女"评委)" (in Zh-hans). TOM. 2006-04-10. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  20. ^ "麦田道歉韩寒接受 众人质疑:谁在炒作?". Sina.com. Retrieved 3 February 2012. 
  21. ^ "方舟子:我就是要把韩寒神话打破". Sina.com. Retrieved 3 February 2012. 
  22. ^ Martinsen, Joel (1 February 2012). "Han Han the novelist versus Fang Zhouzi the fraud-buster". Danwei. Retrieved 3 February 2012. 
  23. ^ "终极铁证:韩寒的《谈革命》等博文,竟然先发于韩仁均博客". sohu.com. Retrieved 17 Nov 2012. 
  24. ^ "Han Han opens online bookstore to help friends, sells over 10,000 books in 3 days (韩寒为帮朋友网上开书店 3天买了1万多(图))" (in Zh-hans). Xinlang (新浪网). 2009-04-22. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  25. ^ "Han Han does it again, opens online bookstore and becomes own boss (韩寒又"折腾" 网上开书店当起小老板)" (in Zh-hans). Beijing Youth News (《北京青年报》-人民网). 2009-04-22. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  26. ^ "Han Han sets up magazine with article fees as high as RMB 2,000 per 1,000 characters (韩寒筹办杂志 开出天价稿费最高千字2000元(图))" (in Zh-hans). Sohu (搜狐网). 2009-05-02. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  27. ^ a b c "韩寒郭敬明晒杂志稿酬" (in Zh-hans). 光明网. 2009-05-05. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  28. ^ "Notable developments at Han Han's magazine (更应关注韩寒办什么样杂志)" (in Zh-hans). Chinanews (深圳商报-中新网). 2009-05-07. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  29. ^ "Han Han's magazine to publish "braindead" articles (韩寒杂志刊登脑残稿)" (in Zh-hans). Wangyi (网易网). 2009-05-05. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  30. ^ Han Han (韩寒) (2009-05-01). "Request for articles, recruitment, article fees and article submission email address for the new magazine (新杂志的征稿信,征人信,稿费标准,投稿邮箱)". Han Han's blog (韩寒博客). Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  31. ^ "Han Han's magazine receives over 10,000 article submissions in 5 days, including pornographic literature and dissertations (韩寒办杂志5天收万余投稿 有黄色小说毕业论文)" (in Zh-hans). Sohu (搜狐网). 2009-05-07. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  32. ^ "Han Han sets up new magazine and looks for high-quality articles, high fees enable writers to regain their dignity (韩寒办新杂志征好稿 高稿酬挽文人人格)" (in Zh-hans). Beijing Evening News (北京晚报-艾森网). 2009-05-04. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  33. ^ "Han Han – from rebellious youth to intellectual, or the next Lu Xun? (韩寒从叛逆青年到知识分子 或成下一个鲁迅?)" (in Zh-hans). Zhongxin (中新网). 2009-05-14. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  34. ^ "Reference information (参考消息)" (in Zh-hans). Han Han's official blog (韩寒官方博客). 2009-09-20. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  35. ^ Jacobs, Andrew (2010-03-10). "Heartthrob’s Blog Challenges China’s Leaders". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  36. ^ "Reference information (韩寒杂志《独唱团》刚上架预订即排销售榜首)" (in Zh-hans). 腾讯网. 2010-07-02. Retrieved 2010-07-09. [dead link]
  37. ^ "Han Han's magazine dies". The Global times. 2010-12-28. Retrieved 2011-02-06. 
  38. ^ "Han Han's one magazine". Fenghuang net. 2012-06-12. Retrieved 2012-12-23. 
  39. ^ "Sorry to disappoint you". Sina blog. 2012-11-28. Retrieved 2012-12-24. 
  40. ^ "Han Han encounters financial difficulties due to racing and lack of financial knowledge (因玩赛车又不懂理财 韩寒自曝陷入了财务危机)" (in Zh-hans). Heilongjiang News (黑龙江日报). 2007-08-13. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  41. ^ a b Han Han (韩寒) (2007-08-13). "Han Han: Racing is expensive and often causes financial difficulties (韩寒:玩赛车最费钱 没钱了常揭不开锅)". Jiangxi News (江西日报). Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  42. ^ "Han Han: Winning racing prizes shows that I'm an all-rounded learner (韩寒:赛车夺冠证明我是全面发展的好学生)" (in Zh-hans). Sohu (搜狐网). 2007-10-26. Retrieved 2009-10-10. 
  43. ^ "Report on supervision and guidance work in preparation for the WRC in Australia (赴澳大利亚监督指导世界拉力锦标赛的工作报告)" (in Zh-hans). Han Han's blog (韩寒个人博客). 2009-09-20. Retrieved 2009-10-11. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]