Yan Lianke is an award-winning writer and author of an extensive body of novels, novellas, short stories, essays and criticisms, including The Four Books, Enjoyment, and The Explosion Chronicles. On leaving school, he joined the People’s Liberation Army, gaining a degree in politics and education from Henan University in 1985, and a degree in literature from the PLA Academy of Art in 1991. He is a member of the Chinese Writers’ Association and the recipient of numerous literary awards, including the Lu Xun Literary Prize and Lao She Award Literature Prize. He was shortlisted for the 2013 Man Booker International Prize, and became the first Chinese writer to be awarded the Franz Kafka Literature Prize in 2014. As his books are highly satirical, some of his most renowned works, including Serve the People!, are banned in China. Yan is currently a IAS Sin Wai Kin Professor of Chinese Culture at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Professor at Renmin University of China's School of Liberal Arts.