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Ha Jin

Jin Xuefei (born February 21, 1956) is a contemporary Chinese-American writer using the pen name Ha Jin.



Jin was born in Liaoning, China in 1956. His father was a military officer and Jin joined the Chinese liberation army in 1969 during the Cultural Revolution. In 1981 he graduated from the Heilongjiang University with a Bachelor's degree in English studies, then obtained his Masters in Anglo-American literature three years later.

Jin was under a scholarship at the Brandeis University, the United States, when the 1989 Tiananmen incident broke out. The government's forcible put-down hasten his decision to emigrate. He remained in the United States after his PhD in 1992, publishing his first book of poems, Between Silences, in 1990.

He sets many of his stories and novels in China, in the fictional locale of Muji City. He has won a number of awards for his writing, including The National Book Award for his novel, Ocean Of Words (1996) has been awarded the PEN-Hemingway Award. He currently teaches at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia