Yongping, Li [李永平] (1947--) By Groppe, Alison
Li Yongping is a Taiwan author who rose to literary fame for a collection of interrelated short stories called Retribution: The Jiling Chronicles (吉陵春秋, 1986), considered among the works exemplifying the best of Taiwan modernism. Now a citizen of the Republic of China (Taiwan), Li was born in Kuching, a city in the East Malaysian state of Sarawak, in northwest Borneo. Sarawak became a British crown colony in 1946, and then joined the independent Federation of Malaysia in 1963. Li left Kuching in 1967 to pursue university education in Taiwan, following a route that was and has remained popular with many Chinese Malaysians who, like Li himself, had received some Chinese-language education in Malaysia. Li graduated from National Taiwan University in 1971 and later received postgraduate degrees in the United States. Li relinquished his Malaysian citizenship in 1987. Over the course of his career, Li has published several long novels and collections of short stories and essays; he has also worked as an editor, translator, and professor.