"I would compare the ideal university to a monastery: the Church does not need millions of Trappist monks, but it absolutely needs a small number of them."


Simon Leys


Simon Leys is the pen-name of Pierre Ryckmans, who was born in Belgium and settled in Australia in 1970. He was Professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Sydney from 1987 to 1993.

He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities and Member of the Academie Royale de Literature Francaise (Belgium). His works, some of which have been awarded prizes in Australia, France and the UK, include Chinese Shadows (1977), The Death of Napoleon (1991), and a new translation of the Analects of Confucius (1997). His recent work is titled The Angel and the Octopus.


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