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Professor Nils Göran David Malmqvist, former member of the Foundation’s European Fellowship Review Committee, has Passed Away

Oct 18, 2019

The Foundation regretfully announces the death of Professor Nils Göran David Malmqvist, who passed away at his home in Sweden on October 17. He was 95 years old.

Professor Malmqvist was a leading disciple of the eminent Sinologist Klas Bernhard Johannes Karlgren, doing research on classic Chinese novels like the Journey to the West and the Water Margin, as well as a translation of the Chuang-tzu. He was also a fast friend to the Foundation, making numerous important contributions to our long-term development, including promoting our programs in Chinese Studies throughout the European Region.

In 1990, while serving as President of the European Association of Chinese Studies, Professor Malmqvist invited Foundation President Yih-yuan Li to that organization’s biennial meeting in Leiden, marking the first time that we made the acquaintance of many leading figures in European Sinology. The establishment of the Foundation’s European Region grant and fellowship programs can be traced to that occasion, which allowed us to help shape Sinology’s growth in that region. Two years later, in 1992, Professor Malmqvist helped the Foundation convene an international conference on European Sinology, which was held in Taipei’s Grand Hotel. Over 100 of the world’s eminent Sinologists took part in this event, including 45 from 14 European nations, 4 from Japan and Korea, and over 60 from Taiwan, with an additional 70 younger scholars also sitting in. While Sinology has a venerable history in Europe, this was the first time that Sinologists from all its major countries had gathered together to discuss their field’s past and plan for its future. The Foundation took advantage of this occasion to establish new friendships with numerous senior scholars, inviting them to serve on our review committees and consulting with them as to how to promote new programs in the future.

Through the years, Professor Malmqvist provided dedicated service on the Foundation’s European Fellowship Review Committee, while also keeping us informed of major trends in the field of European Sinology. In 1997, Professor Malmqvist gave a lecture on “The Art of Translation” at Academia Sinica, which sparked the Foundation’s commitment to translating major works of modern Taiwanese literature. Professor Malmqvist and Professor David Der-Wei Wang took charge of this important project along with Professor Emeritus Pang-yuan Chi of National Taiwan University. Their efforts of the past 22 years have resulted in a series of 30 English translations, which have sparked great interest among scholars of European and American literature while earning recognition in the form of prestigious prizes. Their efforts have helped promote the growth of Taiwanese literature worldwide.

During each of his visits to Taiwan for international scholarly exchange, Professor Malmqvist always found time to meet with us and discuss our Foundation’s affairs. We feel great sorrow at his passing, and would like to thank this eminent scholar once again for his many contributions.

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