Located in an attic in Paris, Midnight Press only has an upward and narrow stairway. Originally, it had less than 10 members and published less than 50 varieties each year, making it a truly ordinary press among 5,000-plus publishing houses in France. Yet, it is this truly ordinary press that published the representative books of French new novel writers, including Mauriac, Grillet, Beckett, Simon, Duras, Pinget, and Buto, among others. With popularity around the world, Midnight Press has illuminated the whole sky like dazzling stars.
Liu Gangshun opened an independent bookstore – “Post-Human Bookstore” in Huangshi, Hubei Province in 1995. Before that, French new novels had advocated casting off old moral ideas, thoughts and emotions, breaking the restrictions of space-time structure and narrative order, with the inner world of the authors being described with the stream of consciousness, co-existence of virtual world and reality, reverse of time and space, and other means. This unexpected language world has greatly impacted Chinese literature since the 1980s and become one of the marks of the cultural craze in the 1980s. Many bookstores founded by intellectuals and artists emerged in more than a decade after that, such as Wansheng Bookstore in Beijing, Borges Bookstore in Guangzhou, Kafka Bookstore in Chengdu, and Sisyphus in Guizhou, to name but a few. Since then, there hasn’t been a year or wave in China which can have such a clear ideal for reading.