Born 1955 in Bern, Switzerland, as a son of a Chinese diplomat. At the beginning of the Cultural Revolution 11 years old, he was sent in 1974 to the countryside for “reeducation through work” for 3 years. Since 1977 working for a radio station, he participated in the “spring of Beijing” in 1979. Member of the literary movement “Jintian” (“Today”). During the massacre of Tiananmen Square in 1989 Yang Lian and his wife, writer You You, were on a lecture tour in New Zealand. Since then they have lived in Western countries.
Yang Lian´s books include: “The Dead in Exile” 1990; “Non-Person Singular. Selected Poems” 1990; “Masks and Crocodiles” 1991; “China daily” (photo book with poems) 1995.
Yang Lian recieved numberous awards and grants, e.g., Flaiano International Prize For Poetry, 1999; Literarisches Colloquium, Berlin 1999; Maison des ecrivans etrangers et des traducteurs, Frankreich 1998.