Chinese writer Mr. Mo Yan awarded an honorary doctorate by university in Bulgaria
At the invitation of the Confucius Institute in Sofia, Mr. Mo Yan, a renowned Chinese writer and the winner of Nobel Prize in Literature in 2012, visited Sofia University to receive an honorary doctorate degree and attended celebrations from 26 to 28 September 2014 marking the 10th anniversary of the Confucius Institute.
On the morning of September 27, the degree ceremony was held in the Aula (Ceremonial Hall) of Sofia University. Bulgarian Prime Minister Georgi Bliznashki, together with the Minister of Culture and the Minister of Education and Science in the caretaker government attended the ceremony. Attendees also included Chinese Ambassador to Bulgaria Mr. Wei Jinghua, cultural counsellor Mr. Yin Yali, Vice-president of Beijing Foreign Studies University Mr. Yan Guohua, Director of the Confucius Institute in Sofia Ms. Antonia Tsankova, Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute in Sofia Mr. Ge Zhiqiang and over 600 literature enthusiasts from all walks of life in Bulgaria.
Mr. Mo Yan receiving the honorary doctorate degree at Sofia University
Mr. Mo Yan in an academic gown at the ceremony
In his speech, Mr. Ivan Ilchev, Rector of Sofia University, spoke highly of the outstanding achievement made by Mo Yan in literature. Mr. Mo Yan, wearing an academic gown, thanked Sofia University for granting him the honor and talked about the influence of the Bulgarian writer Elin Pelin on his literary career. He expounded his literary objectives of “writing stories of one’s hometown”, and “penning stories around the world as stories of one’s hometown and penning people of the world as people of one’s hometown”, and the idea of getting literary material and inspiration from life, music and art. Ms. Antonia Tsankova, Director of the Confucius Institute in Sofia, provided simultaneous interpretation of his speech.
Mr. Mo Yan also attended the literature forum held by Sofia University and the Confucius Institute in Sofia. Participants of the forum discussed his works, and he presented prizes to winners of a contest to translate his short stories.
The degree ceremony received extensive coverage from many news media including Xinhua News Agency, Bulgarian News Agency (BTA), Bulgarian National TV (BNT) and Dneven Trud (Labour) newspaper.
Text by Li Xiangdong
Photographed by Liu Ming, Zhou Jiao