- Category : 1910-births
- Type : MGP
- Profile : 5/1 - Heretical / Investigator
- Definition : Split - Small (56)
- Incarnation Cross : LAX The Alpha 2
Chinese writer, essayist, journalist and translator.
In 1933 Xiao entered the Faculty of English in Yenching University and in autumn of the same year he switched to the Faculty of Journalism. His teacher was an American journalist Edgar Snow. Snow encouraged him to use various literary techniques in journalistic reporting, which became characteristic to Xiao's writing. He graduated in June 1936 and continued the studies as a postgraduate student at Cambridge University. Soon after he became a lecturer at University College London.
In 1939, at the age of 28, Xiao Qian returned to England to work as an instructor in modern Chinese language for the School of Oriential and African Studies (SOAS) in London. SOAS was moved to Cambridge when Germany began the devastating bombing campaign Blitz.
Xiao Qian was politically active and made regular speeches for the China Campaign Committee, a left-wing group which campaigned against the Japanese occupation in China.
Apart from his work as a journalist and a writer, Xiao also translated important works of European literature into Mandarin Chinese. He translated several books and plays by William Shakespeare, Stephen Leacock and Henrik Ibsen. These were widely published in mainland China and Taiwan.
During the Cultural Revolution (1966–1976) Xiao Qian was regarded by the Communist Party of China as a member of the Right Wing and was banished to the countryside. In 1968 he tried to commit suicide. In 1978 he received a redress as one of the mishandled cases.
He married four times. In 1936 he met his first wife Wang Shucang while working on the Shanghai edition of the Takung Pao. The couple only stayed together for two years before he fell in love with another woman during his stay in Hong Kong. They had an extramarital son born in 1948. Xiao tried to get a divorce, but Wang opposed it and as a result Xiao Qian left China for England.
In 1954, Xiao married his fourth wife, Wen Jieruo. They had two sons and a daughter. On 30 January 1955 the daughter Xiao Lizi. Xiao's older sister and a good friend Bing Xin mentioned that a lack of love in his childhood made him an amorous man.
In 1999 Xiao Qian died at the age of 90 of myocardial infarction and renal failure in Beijing.