Read on the Lake: Let’s read Nanjing City of Literature Classics Series together

On July 28th evening, the fourth ‘Read on the Lake’event was held on a classical lake boat at Xuanwu Lake Park. Experts such as Feng Yitong, Cao Jinsong, Hu Axiang and Fan Liwen led everybody to seek out Nanjing’s literature context throughout history. Participants were discussing, interpreting and inheriting classics. This activity was held by Jiangsu Reading Promotion Association, Jiangsu Broadcasting Corporation and Nanjing Literature Center with Jiangsu Shuxiang Reading Foundation, Nanjing Reading Promotion Association, Nanjing Xuanwu Lake Park Office and Litchi Reading Club as co-organizers.

The theme of this event is “Let’s read Nanjing City of Literature Classics Series together”, and invited Feng Yitong (Consultant of Nanjing Writers Association; Consultant of Jiangsu Chinese Poetry Research Association; Poet); Cao Jinsong (President of Nanjing Federation of Social Science Associations and Nanjing Academy of Social Science); Hu Axiang (Professor of Nanjing University, Director of The Oriental Metropolitan Museum) and Fan Liwen (Executive Editor of Nanjing Press) to conduct an in-depth introduction of these four books of “Nanjing City of Literature Classics Series”, including “Poetry Nanjing”, “Liweng on Rhyme, Occasional Notes with Leisure Motions” “Essays of Suiyuan on Poetry” “Memoir of Nanjing”, from two aspects: inherit and create, and discuss how we should inherit Chinese excellent cultural gene and then inject it into our modern life.

Fan Liwen, from the aspect of texts, explained why these four books were selected as the first volume of “Nanjing City of Literature Classics Series”.

In Hu Axiang’s view, “Memoir of Nanjing” records Nanjing’s history and memories; “Poetry Nanjing” depicts Nanjing’s appearance; “Essays of Suiyuan on Poetry” shows Nanjing’s personalities; and “Liweng on Rhyme, Occasional Notes with Leisure Motions” covers Nanjingers’ knowledge about “World, Universe, Life”. All of these four books demonstrate the beauty of Nanjing, the City of Literature.

Feng Yitong thinks, “Someone regarded Nanjing as a city of sadness and sorrow, and they thought Nanjing’s history lead to this. In fact, this is a narrow misunderstanding and misreading. To be realistic, Nanjing, this historical city and city of literature, always embraces Chinese culture and national spirit.”

This event was broadcasted online through ‘Litchi News’, and there were over one hundred thousand audiences online. Both online and live audiences were able to interact with guest experts. Online audiences have brought their questions which include ‘How to encourage teenagers to read classics? Would reading of classics help students to improve their grades?’ and ‘With the enrichment of our material life, the form of cultural life is getting various as well. Have historical literature classics like ‘Classics Series’ become obsolete?’. Guest experts have answered these questions.

Hu Axiang thinks, “Reading can make life better, accumulate enough knowledge by reading, kids will have better performance and grades in school, we should not just focus on the present results, but we need consider reading’s benefits in long-term.”

Cao Jinsong thinks, “Exams or tests are just a method of checking periodical studies, and not the purpose of studying, pursuit of persons’ all-round developments should be everyone’s eternal priority.”

Regarding whether the historical literary classics are obsolete or not, Hu Axiang answers, “The existence of much stuff was reasonable at a special period of history, with the consistent change of time, those stuff may disappear or vanish now. However, classics can go beyond time and space, they can be a book, a poet, all these classics survived from the harsh test of time.”

Throughout two-thousand-year history of six dynasties, Nanjing has always played an essential role at cultural and literature fields throughout Chinese history. A lot of masterpieces and great causes were originated from Nanjing. Including poetry that Chinese people have always been proud of, classical arts, and rising stars of literature field. Nanjing is not only the origin but also the corpus of greatness, and it impacts the world with culture exports.

During this event, Han Songlin, the president of Jiangsu Reading Promotion Association gave out the awards to the representatives of the platform, the institution and the voluntary service organization who have been granted the title of “Top 50 of 3rd Jiangsu Reading ”.

Han Songlin, the president of Jiangsu Reading Promotion Association; Zhou Bin, the deputy director of Jiangsu Broadcasting Corporation; Yuan Shuang, the director of Nanjing Literature Center; Wang Jianping, the director-general of Jiangsu Shuxiang Reading Foundation; Liu Feng, the head of expert guidance department in Jiangsu Reading Promotion Association; Yang Changjin, the secretary-general of Nanjing Reading Promotion Association; Qin Xiaobin, the director of Nanjing Xuanwu Lake Park Office attended this event.

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