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The history of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's drama in the XX and XXI centuries.

Li Syan

PhD in Philology

Postgraduate student, Department of History of Russian Literature, Moscow State University

119991, Russia, Moskovskaya Oblast' oblast', g. Moscow, ul. Leninskie Gory, 1

lisaxiang2021@yandex.ru
Other publications by this author
 

 

DOI:

10.25136/2409-8698.2022.6.37994

Received:

29-04-2022


Published:

06-05-2022


Abstract: Recently, there has been an increase in the interest of scientists in studying foreign translations of Chekhov's dramatic works. There are quite a lot of comparative studies of various Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays in a certain period, but the problem of systematic periodization of Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays has been little studied. The article is devoted to understanding the history of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's plays in the XX and XXI centuries. The subject of the study is various Chinese translations of Chekhov's dramatic works. The purpose of this work is a systematic analysis of the features and causes of the development of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's drama in different periods. Descriptive, analytical and comparative methods are used in the course of the study. For the first time, the work provides a relatively holistic overview of the history of reception and translation of Chekhov's drama in China since the XXI century. In a comparative study of Chinese translations of Chekhov's dramatic works, it is necessary to pay attention to the perception of foreign culture by different translators. We divide the complex history of reception and translation of Chekhov's drama in Chinese culture of the XX - XXI centuries into five stages. With the change of time and the development of theory and the level of translation, the artistic charm of Chekhov's drama is revealed even more. Chekhov's transformation from a typical realist writer into a recognized pioneer of modern drama of the XX century also confirms the complexity, ambiguity and advancement of Chekhov's work. We also need to look at the translations of Chekhov's dramaturgy from an intercultural point of view, timely consider the latest achievements of research in the field of translation of Chekhov's dramaturgy at home and abroad and look for ways of mutual comparison between different cultures in comparing translations.


Keywords:

Chekhov 's dramaturgy, China, translation, translators, periodization, history, culture, reception, interpretation, Jiao Juyin

This article is automatically translated. You can find original text of the article here.

The dissemination and research of Chekhov's dramatic work in China has been conducted since the beginning of the XX century and continues to this day, for more than 100 years. Over the past century, the intercultural development of Chekhov's dramaturgy has been influenced by Chinese translations of Chekhov's drama in different periods. In this study, we propose a model for the periodization of the development of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's plays, which, in our opinion, took place in five stages.

The first stage was the period of 1917-1927.

In the history of modern Chinese literature, this period is usually designated as the decade of the Chinese literary revolution, extremely significant and promising. During this period, foreign literature provided the conditions for the Chinese literary revolution, which contributed to the transformation of traditional Chinese literature. The influence of foreign literature on modern Chinese literature is mainly realized in a complex translation process.

In connection with the October Revolution in Russia and the spread of Marxism in China, the works of many Russian writers were translated. During this period, some of Chekhov's plays were quickly translated. In the view of Chinese readers, Chekhov became one of the outstanding Russian playwrights.

Chinese translations of Chekhov's one-act plays (1920-1925)

Title of Chekhov 's play

Time

Translator

Translation

"Offer"

onethousandninehundredtwenty

Geng Jiji

This is the very first edition in Chinese, published in the journal "Liberation and Creation" (vol. 2, No. 12).

10.10.1923

Cao Jinghua

Published in "Funyuji" (vol. 9, No. 11).

06.12.1923

Gao Shihua

Published in the weekly "Literature and Art" (No. 17).

"Bear"

10.02.1923

Geng Jiji

Published in the magazine "Vostok" (vol. 20, No. 3).

05.09.1923

Shen Xingren

Published in the magazine "Pacific" (vol. 4, No. 3).

20.12.1923

Cao Jinghua

Published in the magazine "New Youth".

"Wedding"

In June 1924

Cao Jinghua

Published in the newspaper "Morning News".

"Swan Song"

In October 1925

Jiao Juyin

Published in the newspaper "Morning News".

During this period, in addition to translations of Chekhov's one-act sketches and vaudevilles, translations of Chekhov's plays were made.

Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays (1920-1925)

Title of Chekhov 's play

Time

Translator

Translation

"The Cherry Orchard" (act one)

1920-1921 .

Do you have

Separately published in the magazine "Fudan" (No. 11, 12).

"The Seagull"

onethousandninehundredtwentyone

Zheng Zhenduo

Russian Russian Literature is included in the "Collection of Russian Plays" from a series of books on the topic "Russian Literature".

"Ivanov"

Geng Shizhi

"Uncle Vanya"

"Cherry Orchard"

"Three Sisters"

onethousandninehundredtwentyfive

Cao Jinghua

His publishing house is "Commercial Press/Commercial press".

We see that at this time eight Chinese translators (i.e. Zheng Zhenduo, Cao Jinghua, Geng Zizhi, Geng Shizhi, Wu Li, Shen Xingren, Jiao Juyin and Gao Shihua) were engaged in Chekhov's plays. Thanks to their work, we have Chinese translations of most of Chekhov's plays. The joke in one action "Bear" was translated by three translators at once Ц Geng Zizhi, Shen Xingren and Cao Jinghua; "Sentence" was translated three times Ц Geng Zizhi, Gao Shihua and Cao Jinghua. All this indicates a strong preference for Chekhov's one-act genres.

However, during this period, Chekhov's multi-act drama with mature art and deep thought was not as popular as the one-act drama. The fact is that, on the one hand, there are great cultural differences between Russia and China: Russian customs, national psychology, religious beliefs, language expressions, etc. in Chekhov's plays are incomprehensible to Chinese readers and viewers; on the other hand, Chinese viewers and readers pay more attention to the life of a small person living in darkness, reflected in Chekhov's dramatic works. They believe that Chekhov's drama emphasizes his belief in a bright future. At the dawn of the perception of Chekhov's dramatic works in China, Chekhov's call for human freedom and human awakening, as well as his description of the humanitarian and realistic characteristics of the little man, received a lot of attention, but the unique aesthetic value and universal significance of Chekhov's drama did not attract the attention of readers and viewers enough. The value of Chekhov's plays lies precisely in the philosophical meaning of life, and not in the political point of view.

It should be noted that the Chinese literary translation of this time was rich in content and deep intentions Ц it is a dramatic synthesis of various social trends, criticism of the national character, the construction of new literature. During this transitional period of Chinese ideology and culture, many new intellectuals entered the historical scene and became an important force in promoting socially progressive ideas. Chinese writers and translators began to intensively engage in artistic translation, continuing their literary work. Their translations and creations complement each other. Among the foreign literary works then translated and put into use in China, Russian works of art occupy the first place in terms of their scale and influence. The following main features in the field of translation of Russian literature can be outlined.

Firstly, during this period, the majority of Chinese translators were primarily literary, which objectively contributes to the prosperity of literary translation.

Secondly, during the Movement for a New culture (i.e., new trends in the social and scientific thought of China in 1919 and in subsequent years), Chinese translators use the modern Chinese language "Baihua" for translation, making translated works more accessible, popular among Chinese readers and distributing them more widely.

Thirdly, direct translation methodologically performs basic functions, but during this period, secondary translation is also popular, which is not made from Russian into Chinese, but from a third language. For example, Zheng Zhenduo translated "The Seagull" based on the English translation.

Fourth, the theory of literary translation is still undergoing its formation and is not sufficiently substantiated in all its aspects. Although translation practice during this period was very intensive, the level of comprehension of literary translation was quite low, and the lack of research on the artistic translation of drama was especially affected. Because of this unavoidable limitation, the strong literary and scenic character, as well as the rich subtext contained in the dialogue, the comic effect, the individuality of the characters' language and the symbolic meaning of cultural images in Chekhov's dramatic works are not fully conveyed.

The second stage Ц the 1930s-1940s.

After the war and the accompanying changes, realistic needs and other internal patterns of literary development push writers and translators to new sources, forcing them to translate and distribute foreign literature with a broader vision and at a deeper level. Therefore, the translation of Chekhov's works becomes more profound.

The modern Chinese historian and writer Guo Mojo notes that Chekhov was very popular in China because he "corresponded to the experience of an Oriental person" [1, p. 168]. The realism in Chekhov's drama is clearer than in his prose. All this just meets the requirements of Chinese drama to reflect real life. In China, more and more attention is being paid to Chekhov's new realistic drama. Its unique ideological connotation and artistic charm attract Chinese readers.

In the first period, translations and studies of Chekhov's works were scattered in newspapers and magazines and published in only a few collections. By the 1930s and 1940s, the situation had changed dramatically: Chekhov's important works were not only increasingly translated into Chinese, but also appeared in a large number of collections and individual prints; by the end of the 1940s, Chekhov's most important works were mostly translated into Chinese, and some also appeared in several different versions of the translation [5, p. 62]). Chekhov's major plays aroused growing interest among an increasing number of Chinese readers and writers.

In the process of more and more in-depth reading of foreign plays by Chinese playwrights, Chekhov's realistic dramas, bearing the poetics of a new style, attracted close attention, and therefore the translation began to gravitate towards the forms of research of Chekhov's dramaturgy. The level of translation of Chinese translators has been constantly increasing, and as a result, a number of outstanding translators of Chekhov literature have emerged, such as Cao Jinghua, Jiao Juyin, Zhu Lung, Li Ni, Man Tao, etc. Their translations of Chekhov's drama fully demonstrate the exquisite imagery and rich poetic flavor in Chekhov's works.

As for the translation of Chekhov's oneЦact plays during this period, it is necessary to mention the "Collection of Chekhov's one-act drama" (translator - Li Jianwu), published by the Shanghai publishing house "Cultural Life" in August 1948. This collection includes translations of such Chekhov plays as "On the High Road", "On the Dangers of Tobacco", "Swan Song", "Bear", "Proposal", "Tatiana Repina", "The Reluctant Tragedian", "Wedding", "Anniversary".

In addition, the following translations of Chekhov's major plays appeared during this period.

Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays (1930-1947)

Title of Chekhov 's play

Time

Translator

Translation

"Fatherless" ("Platonov")

In November 1935

He Fan

From Japanese into Chinese, published by the Nanjing Zhengzhong Publishing House.

"Ivanov"

In November 1946

Li Ni

Published by Shanghai publishing house "Cultural Life".

"The Seagull"

onethousandninehundredforty

Fan Xin

Published by Shanghai World Book Publishing.

In February 1944

Hu Suiben

Published by the Chongqing Southern Translation Company.

In November 1946

Li Ni

Published by Shanghai publishing house "Cultural Life".

"Uncle Vanya"

onethousandninehundredthirty

Zhu Xiangcheng

Published by the bookstore "Blue".

In July 1940

Fan Xin

Published by Shanghai World Book Publishing.

In November 1946

Li Ni

Published by the Shanghai publishing house "Cultural Life".

"Cherry Orchard"

onethousandninehundredthirtynine

Yu Di

Published by the Shanghai publishing house "Burevestnik".

In July 1940

Man Tao

Published by the Shanghai publishing house "Cultural Life". (And then reprinted in November 1940; published in January 1944 by the Chongqing publishing house "Cultural Life".)

In November 1943

Jiao Juyin

Published by Chongqing publishing house "Tomorrow". (And then in August 1947 published by the Shanghai Writers' Bookstore.)

In November 1944

Fan Xin

Shanghai World Book Publishing.

In July 1946

Zi Jiang

Published by the Kunming publishing house "Xiaomin".

It should be noted that during this period, as many as five Chinese translations of the play "The Cherry Orchard" appeared, which indicates its enormous popularity in China at that time. In order to make Chinese readers get closer to the world and the peak of the dramatic art of Chekhov's "Swan Song", Chinese translators made attempts to translate and interpret again and again.

In his article "Translation of the Cherry Orchard." Postscript " Jiao Juin, a well-known theater director and translator, presents the process of Chekhov's creation of the Cherry Orchard, conducts a deep and subtle discussion of the ideology and artistic style of the work, and also makes wonderful comments. Jiao Juin's interpretation is that the cherry orchard is a "symbolic poetry of society": a snowЦwhite blooming garden can no longer survive and is a victim of wastefulness Ц it embodies the old crumbling feudal system [8, p. 131]. Jiao Juin's positive attitude to the historically inevitable law of development, according to which capitalism replaces feudalism, determines his more critical attitude towards the old owner of the cherry orchard and sympathy for its new owner. Jiao Juin believes that when reading Chekhov's plays, we "should abandon our traditional view of drama", because Chekhov's script is not a "drama", but a "human drama", which is "exactly the same as reality" [8, p. 133].

For Jiao Juyin and most Chinese translators of Chekhov's literature, an important and indisputable idea in Chekhov's works is to reveal the reality and inevitability of historical development (for example, the replacement of feudalism by capitalism). This idea directly affects the understanding of Chinese translators and their transmission of the work. For example, in their translations we can notice that the old owners of the cherry orchard and the fallen aristocrats were sharply ridiculed, while the new owner of the cherry orchard, representing the emerging bourgeois way of life, is depicted as a perfect image of a positive character. Lopakhin shouts: "Hey, musicians, play, I want to listen to you! Come all to see how Ermolai Lopakhin will take an axe through the cherry orchard, how the trees will fall to the ground! We will set up dachas, and our grandchildren and great-grandchildren will see a new life here... Music play! [10] (Chinese translation: ?!,!!,Ј!!,!ЕЕ,!)ї [9]. This passage is interpreted in the Chinese translation by Jiao Jiuin as a positive desire for a new life in its meaning and is highly appreciated. In fact, Chekhov profoundly expresses a relative objective position. On the one hand, the merchant is subjected to a kind of punishment for destroying the beauty of the cherry orchard. And on the other hand, Lopakhin is a pragmatic and hardworking figure, despite his bourgeois nature in some ways. He longs for the new and hopes to change his old life.

In addition to the translation of Chekhov's drama, Chekhov's biographical works, diaries, letters were also translated in large numbers at that time, such as the translation of Chekhov's book "Around Chekhov" Ц the memoirs of Mikhail Chekhov (Chekhov's younger brother) about the life and work of his older brother (translator Ц Lu Lizhi, 1932), the translation of the book Vol. I. Nemirovich-Danchenko "The Birth of the theater: memoirs, articles, notes, letters" (translator Ц Qiao Jiuin, 1946), etc.

Although the Chinese translation of Chekhov's dramaturgical works in the 1930s and 1940s was more professional and systematic than during the May 4, 1919 movement, Chinese translators mostly remain faithful to the principles of interpreting and exposing the darkness of society, reflecting real life and striving for a better future in Chekhov's plays. At that time, they connected the human environment revealed in Chekhov's drama with a specific social system and described Chekhov with a weak political concept as a representative of writers of revolutionary realism, but did not pay enough attention to Chekhov's unique dramatic shade and charm.

The third stage Ц the 1950s and 1960s.

Thanks to the friendly relations between the USSR and the People's Republic of China during this period, Chekhov's stories, novellas and plays were increasingly translated, published and republished. The quantity and quality of Chinese translations has surpassed all the limits achieved over the previous 40 years. Zhu Lun made the greatest contribution to the translation of Chekhov's works. From 1950 to 1958, his 27-volume Collection of Chekhov's Short Stories and Novellas was published by the publishing houses Pinmin and New Literature and Art. In 1954, the Shanghai publishing house "New Literature and Art" published translations of Jiao Juyin, which were included in Chekhov's Drama Collection, including the plays "Ivanov", "The Seagull", "Three Sisters", "Uncle Vanya" and "Cherry Orchard". In 1954, the People's Literary Publishing House published a "Collection of Chekhov's oneЦact drama" (its translator is Cao Jinghua), which included four one-act plays: "Bear", "Proposal", "Wedding" and "Anniversary". In 1960, the People's Literary Publishing House published the "Collection of Chekhov's Drama" in translations by Cao Jinghua, Li Ni, Man Tao. Five plays and seven one-act sketches and vaudevilles were published in this collection. This collection was then considered as the most complete collection of Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays.

After the 1950s, the special historical situation and the political situation in China also influenced the translation of Chekhov's works. For example, in Man Tao's translation of The Cherry Orchard from the Chekhov Drama Collection, the phrase "Hello, new life!" from the dialogue between Anya and Trofimov is translated as "long live the new life". Jiao Juyin also translated this sentence as ",long live the new life". And the correct translation should be ", (Hello, new life)". ",? ,? (Hello, new life)" and "?,?,?,? (long live the new life)" express different feelings. Saying ", (Hello, new life)", we simply welcome the arrival of a new life; and "?, /,?,? (long live a new life)" are the words of people with the distinctive features of the past time, who praise the new life. In accordance with Chekhov's worldview of that time and his social and historical environment, I think it would be difficult for him to defend the slogan "Long live a new life!".

Representative scientific works of Soviet scientists in the field of Chekhov drama studies were also translated during this period. In 1957 and 1960, the Chinese Drama Publishing House published Chinese translations of two books by V.V. Ermilov "Chekhov's Dramaturgy" and "A.P. Chekhov" (translated by Zhang Shoushen). The works of V.V. Ermilov have a profound influence on the study of Chekhov in China. Chinese scholar Li Chengming believes that "the understanding of Chekhov's dramatic aesthetics by Chinese playwrights and readers is mainly based on these works by Ermilov" [4, p. 6]. In 1960, the Chinese Drama Publishing House published a translation of M. Stroeva's book "Chekhov and the Art Theater", created by translators Wu Qiyuan, Tian Wei and Jun Shi. The book presents the director's interpretation of Chekhov's plays by K.S. Stanislavsky and V.I. Nemirovich Danchenko. This work will play an important role in the development of modern Chinese theatrical art.

In addition, in 1951, the publishing house "Cultural Work" published a translation of S.D. Balukhaty's book "Chekhov's Dramaturgy" (translator Ц Jia Zhifang), and in 1953 Ц a translation of Chekhov's diary entries (translator Ц in the same place); in 1953, the publishing house "Pinmin" published a translation of M. Gorky's memoirs about Chekhov "A.P. Chekhov" (translator Ц Ba Jin).

In the article "Chekhov's Drama in China" (1954), the famous Chinese drama theorist, translator, drama historian Ge Yihong created a step-by-step review of Chekhov's dramaturgy research, which details the history of the translation and performance of Chekhov's one-act and multi-act dramas in China during this period. According to the researcher, "Chekhov has a great influence on the development of the Chinese dramatic movement. His plays enrich our performance programs, and are also dramatized in Chinese stories and staged on the Chinese stage; his special style, his ability to create characters and his serious attitude to life are also worthy of our deep and long-term study" [3, p. 13]. Ge Baoquan's study "Chekhov and China" deals with the relationship between Chekhov's work and Chinese readers, the translation and study of Chekhov's prose and drama in China, as well as Chekhov's influence on Chinese writers. He notes: "Chekhov is not only a great Russian writer, but also a good friend of our Chinese people. The glorious name of Chekhov and his immortal works are dear and familiar to us. Today we remember him not only as a great Russian writer, but also as a good friend of the Chinese people" [2, p. 83].

In general, during the period after the formation of the PRC, the translation, research, and performance of Chekhov's plays on stage reached an unprecedented level: the understanding of Chekhov in Chinese culture became more and more profound. During this period, the level of translation and the degree of reader recognition of foreign literature increased, and many Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays turned out to be closer to the original. For example, "The Cherry Orchard" by Jiao Juyin, "Three Sisters" by Cao Jinghua, "Uncle Vanya" by Li Ni and other translations allow Chinese readers to feel the poetry, deep philosophy, and charm of Russian literature in Chekhov's works.

The fourth stage Ц 1980-1990.

With the advent of the policy of reforms and openness (i.e., the program of economic reforms undertaken in the PRC), the translation of Chekhov's works, the number and quality of scientific monographs and works about Chekhov has reached a new level. It should be noted that from 1980 to 1999, the Shanghai Translation Publishing House carried out the publishing project "Collected Works of Chekhov" in Chinese under the guidance of translator Zhu Lun. This collection is made according to the Russian version of the "Collected Works of Chekhov" (in 12 volumes). The Chinese version consisted of 16 volumes, which included almost all Chekhov's short stories, novellas, plays, letters, diaries, comments, essays and notes, etc. This is a collection of works with the most complete corpus of materials and the highest quality of translation to date. These translations allow Chinese readers to get acquainted with Chekhov's work as fully as possible and are of great importance for Chekhov's research in China. In addition, in 1980, the Shanghai Translation Publishing House also reprinted Chekhov's Dramatic Collection in translations by Jiao Juyin.

During this period, Professor Zhu Yixen of the East China Pedagogical University made an outstanding contribution to the translation of Chekhov's studies in China. He translated A.M. Turkov's book "A.P. Chekhov and His Time" in 1984, translated 217 Chekhov letters Ц "Chekhov's Literary Correspondence" in 1988, and published monographs such as "Chekhov Ц Moral Qualities, Creativity and Art" (1994), "Chekhov 1860-1904" (2006) and others . In the book "Chekhov (1860-1904)" Zhu Yixen analyzes in detail and presents a study of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's plays, Chekhov's moral qualities, creativity and art [11].

The policy of reform and openness has brought unprecedented ideological emancipation to literary and artistic circles. Without the shackles of ideology, people's desire for drama gradually shifted from expressing political emotions to satisfying unique artistic needs. The epoch inevitably influences the reinterpretation and interpretation of Chekhov's drama in China. New concepts of Chekhov's drama are constantly emerging, and its unique aesthetic value and modern significance are accepted by Chinese readers and audiences. Chekhov's objective and calm attitude to the characters, the complex picture of life, the rich character of the characters and the soft and melancholic humor in Chekhov's plays are increasingly impressed by Chinese readers. His plays travel through time and space and interpret the eternal theme of human existence.

The fifth stage begins with the XXI century .

During this period, three major milestones in the field of Chinese translation of Chekhov's plays can be outlined.

The first milestone was marked by a four-volume illustrated edition of a number of books in memory of the hundredth anniversary of Chekhov's death. Its compiler-editor is the Chinese famous translator, playwright, theater critic Tong Daoming (1937-2019). It includes the book "Three Types of Plays", which includes such works as "Fatherlessness", "Uncle Vanya", "Cherry Orchard". This book was specially published for the Chekhov Festival at the Chinese National Theater in 2004. "Fatherless" has already been popular in Europe and the USA for a long time, but has not yet been translated into Chinese. Tong Daoming created a translation of this play, which was thus first staged on the Chinese stage by Chinese director Wang Xiaoying in 2004.

In 2014 Tun Daoming edited the collection "Five Kinds of Plays" dedicated to the 110th anniversary of Chekhov's death. The plays included in it have been revised and supplemented on the basis of the above-mentioned edition of "Three Types of Plays". Moreover, there is a translation of Chekhov's work "One-act Plays, dramatizations and Stories", which includes 9 translated one-act plays "Swan Song", "Jubilee", etc., as well as relevant stories. This translation serves not only as a translation work, but also as a research work on drama. In this book, Tun Daoming analyzes the adaptation of these stories, and also describes the path of Chekhov's creativity from short story to drama, which is of great cognitive importance for staging. For example, Chekhov wrote the vaudeville "Jubilee" (1891), which was based on the story "Defenseless Creature". Tong Daoming notes that the biggest difference between the story and a oneЦact joke is as follows: "The main object of ridicule in the story is a boring and nasty woman who claims that she is weak and defenseless. Although in a one-act joke it still does not arouse sympathy among the audience, Chekhov's satirical wit is obviously mainly shifted to the problem of the bank... Chekhov wants to reveal the ugliness under the cover of a bright shell" [6, p. 187]. All this can be considered as the second milestone in the history of Chinese translations of Chekhov's plays.

The third milestone was marked by the publication of the "Complete Collection of Chekhov's Plays" in 2014. Many of Chekhov's plays have long been translated into Chinese, but for the first time all translations are presented in the form of a four-volume "Complete Collection of all his Plays". The first volume (translated by Jiao Juyin) included translations of such Chekhov plays as "Uncle Vanya", "Three Sisters", "Cherry Orchard". The second (translator Ц Jiao Juyin) included translations of "Seagull", "Ivanov". The third volume (translated by Li Jianwu) contains Chekhov's OneЦAct Plays. The last volume (translator Ц Tun Daoming) introduces "Fatherlessness", "The Devil". All three translators are, moreover, well-known experts in China in the field of research of Chekhov's plays, which makes the book complete and authoritative. Each volume is also accompanied by a preface and corresponding dramatic reviews written by translators, which helps Chinese readers understand the artistic value, ideological context and the real uniqueness of Chekhov's drama.

Chen Feixue, the executive editor of this collection, notes that Jiao Juin is both a stage practitioner and a translator. His translation of Chekhov's five masterpieces (such as "The Seagull", "Ivanov", "Uncle Vanya", "Three Sisters" and "Cherry Orchard") takes into account the peculiarities of the stage and is very remarkable; translations of Chekhov's one-act drama created by Li Jianwu are the most complete and valuable editions; translated by Tong Daoming "Fatherless" and "Leshii" fills a gap in the Chinese translation of Chekhov's drama [7]. This set of authoritative translations by famous masters helps Chinese readers to feel more deeply that "Chekhov is not only a great novelist, but also an outstanding playwright" [6, p. 14], he brings Chinese researchers the opportunity to comprehensively and more holistically, systematically study the creative process and artistic features of Chekhov's drama, and will also play a positive role in promoting the spread of Chekhov's dramaturgy in China.

In addition, since 2004, new research works about Chekhov have been translated and published in China, such as M.P. Chekhov's memoirs "From the Distant Past" (translated by Shi Yunli, the Chinese translation was published by the publishing house "Folk Literature" in 2009), G.P. Berdnikov's book "A.P. Chekhov. Ideological and creative searches" (translator Ц Zhu Yixen, Chinese translation published by the Publishing House of East China Pedagogical University in 2015), etc. They are mainly studies on the problems of Chekhov's biography, but they also reflect a new feature Ц in the new era, Chinese scientists focus more attention on the combination of the life and creative path of the playwright Chekhov. These translations give us more opportunities for a comprehensive and in-depth study of the specifics of Chekhov's dramatic creation.

During this period of translation and reception of Chekhov's drama in China, Chinese readers and viewers continue to get acquainted with the real Chekhov and find new things in his work.

With the change of time and the development of theory and the level of translation, the artistic charm of Chekhov's drama is revealed even more. Chekhov's transformation from a typical realist writer in the eyes of everyone into a recognized pioneer of modern drama of the XX century also confirms the complexity, ambiguity and advancement of Chekhov's work. We also need to look at the translations of Chekhov's dramaturgy from an intercultural point of view, timely consider the latest achievements of research in the field of translation of Chekhov's dramaturgy at home and abroad and look for ways of mutual comparison between different cultures in comparing translations.

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The version of the work submitted for publication concerns the issue of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's drama. The author draws attention to possible translations that were implemented in the XX and XXI centuries. The chosen direction of the work is quite natural, because it presents a vector of changes in the perception of A.P. Chekhov's work on the basis of the Chinese translation complex. The author notes that "the dissemination and research of Chekhov's dramatic work in China has been conducted since the beginning of the XX century and continues to this day, for more than 100 years. Over the past century, the intercultural development of Chekhov's dramaturgy has been influenced by Chinese translations of Chekhov's drama in different periods. In this study, we propose a model for the periodization of the development of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's plays, which, in our opinion, took place in five stages." The study reflects the problem chosen for evaluation/analysis very objectively. The material is organic, extremely / factually correct. It is quite original, in my opinion, and chronologically correct that the translations of Chekhov's plays are given in time. The stylistic dominant of the work is sustained: for example, "in the history of modern Chinese literature, this period is usually designated as the decade of the Chinese literary revolution, extremely significant and promising. During this period, foreign literature provided the conditions for the Chinese literary revolution, which contributed to the transformation of traditional Chinese literature. The influence of foreign literature on modern Chinese literature is mainly realized in the complex process of translation," or "however, during this period, Chekhov's multi-act drama with mature art and deep thought was not as popular as the one-act drama. The fact is that, on the one hand, there are great cultural differences between Russia and China: Russian customs, national psychology, religious beliefs, linguistic expressions, etc. in Chekhov's plays are incomprehensible to Chinese readers and viewers; on the other hand, Chinese viewers and readers pay more attention to the life of a little man living in darkness, reflected in Chekhov's dramatic works. They believe that Chekhov's drama emphasizes his faith in a bright future," or "note that during this period, as many as five Chinese translations of the play "The Cherry Orchard" appeared, which indicates its enormous popularity in China at that time. In order to get Chinese readers closer to the world and the peak of the dramatic art of Chekhov's "Swan Song", Chinese translators made attempts to translate and interpret again and again," etc. The main "set" of dramas is traditional Ц these are "Platonov", "Ivanov", "Chaika", "Uncle Vanya", "Cherry Orchard". It is noted in the work that with a possible transformation of meaning, the attitude towards the author himself also changes Ц from a formal initiative, translators move to a more conscious perception of ideological markers. It is worth noting, for example, in this fragment: "for Jiao Juyin and most Chinese translators of Chekhov's literature, an important and undeniable thought in Chekhov's works is to reveal the reality and inevitability of historical development (e.g., the replacement of feudalism by capitalism). This idea directly affects the understanding of Chinese translators and their transmission of the work." The main stages of the versions of translations of A.P. Chekhov's dramaturgy, in my opinion, are spelled out reliably and accurately. Therefore, the study is extremely verified and reasoned. The traditional format of the scientific article has been maintained, no serious factual violations have been revealed. The text does not need to be edited or supplemented. The final block Ц conclusion Ц is in tune with the main part Ц the dominant thought is expressed accurately, objectively, taking into account critical positions and conclusions. The attached list of sources is reliable, references and citations are fully reflected in the main text array. I believe that the purpose of the reviewed work has been achieved, and the article "Review of the history of the Chinese translation of Chekhov's drama in the XX and XXI centuries" can be recommended for publication in the scientific journal "Litera".
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