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Ha Jin

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Ha Jin
Born (1956-02-21) February 21, 1956 (age 68)
Liaoning, China
Pen nameHa Jin
  • Poet
  • novelist
  • teacher
EducationHeilongjiang University (BA)
Shandong University (MA)
Brandeis University (PhD)
GenrePoetry, short story, novel, essay
Notable works
Notable awards
SpouseLisha Bian
Ha Jin
Jin Xuefei
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese

Jin Xuefei (simplified Chinese: 金雪飞; traditional Chinese: 金雪飛; pinyin: Jīn Xuěfēi; born February 21, 1956) is a Chinese-American poet and novelist using the pen name Ha Jin (哈金). Ha comes from his favorite city, Harbin. His poetry is associated with the Misty Poetry movement.[1]

Early life[edit]

Ha Jin was born in Liaoning, China. His father was a military officer; at thirteen, Jin joined the People's Liberation Army during the Cultural Revolution. Jin began to educate himself in Chinese literature and high school curriculum at sixteen. He left the army when he was nineteen,[2] as he entered Heilongjiang University and earned a bachelor's degree in English studies. This was followed by a master's degree in Anglo-American literature at Shandong University.

Jin grew up in the chaos of early communist China. He was on a scholarship at Brandeis University when the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and massacre occurred. The Chinese government's forcible crackdown hastened his decision to emigrate to the United States, and was the cause of his choice to write in English "to preserve the integrity of his work." He eventually obtained a Ph.D. One of his mentors was literary critic Eugene Goodheart.[3]


Jin sets many of his stories and novels in China, in the fictional Muji City. He has won the National Book Award for Fiction[4] and the PEN/Faulkner Award for his novel, Waiting (1999). He has received three Pushcart Prizes for fiction and a Kenyon Review Prize. Many of his short stories have appeared in The Best American Short Stories anthologies. His collection Under The Red Flag (1997) won the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction, while Ocean of Words (1996) has been awarded the PEN/Hemingway Award. The novel War Trash (2004), set during the Korean War, won a second PEN/Faulkner Award for Jin, thus ranking him with Philip Roth, John Edgar Wideman and E. L. Doctorow who are the only other authors to have won the prize more than once. War Trash was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

Jin currently teaches at Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts. He formerly taught at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.

Jin was a Mary Ellen von der Heyden Fellow for Fiction at the American Academy in Berlin, Germany, in the fall of 2008. He was inducted to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2014.

On July 28, 2021, an asteroid was named after him: (58495) Hajin.[5]

Awards and honors[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ A Brief Guide to Misty Poets Archived 2010-04-12 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ "Ha Jin" Archived 2010-01-31 at the Wayback Machine. Bookreporter.
  3. ^ "最会用英语写作的中国人哈金:没有国家的人-搜狐文化频道". cul.sohu.com. Retrieved 2022-05-26.
  4. ^ a b "National Book Awards – 1999" Archived 2018-11-24 at the Wayback Machine. National Book Foundation. Retrieved 2012-03-27.
    (With acceptance speech by Jin and essay by Ru Freeman from the Awards 60-year anniversary blog.)
  5. ^ WGSBN Bulletin vom 28. Juli 2021, Volume 1, #5, S. 11 (PDF; englisch)
  6. ^ Julie Bosman (September 30, 2012). "Winners Named for Dayton Literary Peace Prize". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 2012-10-02. Retrieved 2012-09-30.
  1. John Noell Moore, "The Landscape Of Divorce When Worlds Collide," The English Journal 92 (Nov. 2002), pp. 124–127.
  2. Ha Jin, Waiting (New York: Pantheon Books, 1999).
  3. Neil J Diamant, Revolutionizing the Family: Politics, Love and Divorce in Urban and Rural China, 1949-1968(Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2000), p. 59.
  4. Ha Jin, The Bridegroom (New York: Pantheon Books, 2000).
  5. Yuejin Wang, Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews 13 (Dec. 1991).
  6. Ha Jin, "Exiled to English" (New York Times, May 30, 2009).

External links[edit]