This paper arises from a series of class discussions inspired by Shen Congwen’s short story about child marriage, “Xiaoxiao” (1929), which took place in the spring of 2018 during an unending series of breaking news related to sexual assault and sexual harassment in the workplace. Beginning from the close reading of one seemingly innocuous line in the English translation—“Finally, one day, she let Motley sing his way into her heart, and he made a woman of her” —the paper seeks to address the following questions: How can translational practices inform and revise conventional ways of reading canonical fictional texts, especially in relationship to current conversations about sexual harassment, rape, and the #MeToo movement? What is the pedagogical responsibility of educators teaching literature to address instances of sexual violence, especially in cultural and historical contexts that seem remote from our own? And finally, what is at stake in this rereading of modern Chinese literary classics? Drawing from examples in two frequently studied and taught stories published in China during the Republican period—Shen Congwen’s “Xiaoxiao” and Mao Dun’s “Spring Silkworms” (1932)—I argue that translation in the present moment offers readers a valuable opportunity to re-examine commonly overlooked scenes of sexual ambiguity and abuse, especially in the field of modern Chinese literature, where many students arrive with a wide range of preconceptions and stereotypes about gender relations.