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Mao's Last Dancer

Mao's Last Dancer Cover

ISBN13: 9780399150968
ISBN10: 039915096x
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

An extraordinary memoir of a peasant boy raised in rural Maoist China who was plucked from his village to study ballet and went on to become one of the greatest dancers of his generation. In 1961, three years of Mao's Great Leap Forward--along with three years of poor harvests--had left a rural China suffering terribly from disease and deprivation. Li Cunxin, his parents' sixth son, lived in a small house with twenty of his relatives and, along with the rest of his family, subsisted for years on the verge of starvation. But when he was eleven years old, Madame Mao decided to revive the Peking Dance Academy, and sent her men into the countryside searching for children to attend. Chosen on the basis of his physique alone, Li Cunxin was taken from his family and sent to the city for rigorous training. What follows is the story of how a small, terrified, lonely boy became one of the greatest ballet dancers in the world. One part Falling Leaves, one part Billy Eliot, Mao's Last Dancer is an unforgettable memoir of hope and courage.

Synopsis:

From a desperately poor village in northeast China, at age eleven, Li Cunxin was chosen by Madame Mao's cultural delegates to be taken from his rural home and brought to Beijing, where he would study ballet. In 1979, the young dancer arrived in Texas as part of a cultural exchange, only to fall in love with America-and with an American woman. Two years later, through a series of events worthy of the most exciting cloak-and-dagger fiction, he defected to the United States, where he quickly became known as one of the greatest ballet dancers in the world. This is his story, told in his own inimitable voice.

About the Author

Li Cunxin was born in a small village near the city of Qingdao, in northern China. At eighteen, he was selected to perform at the Houston Ballet, which led to a dramatic defection to the United States. He has performed as a soloist with the Houston Ballet and as a principal artist with the Australian Ballet.

Table of Contents

Mao's Last Dancer A Wedding: Qingdao, 1946

Part One: My Childhood

1. Home

2. My Niang and Dia

3. A Commune Childhood

4. The Seven of Us

5. Na-na

6. Chairman Mao's Classroom

7. Leaving Home

Part Two: Beijing

8. Feather in a Whirlwind

9. The Caged Bird

10. That First Lonely Year

11. The Pen

12. My Own Voice

13. Teacher Xiao's Words

14. Turning Points

15. The Mango

16. Change

17. On the Way to the West

18. The Filthy Capitalist America

19. Good-bye, China

Part Three: The West

20. Return to the Land of Freedom

21. Elizabeth

22. Defection

23. My New Life

24. A Millet Dream Come True

25. No More Nightmares

26. Russia

27. Mary

28. Going Home

29. Back in My Village

30. Another Wedding: Qingdao, 1988

Postscript

The Li Family Tree

Acknowledgments

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

frieda river reader, November 7, 2008 (view all comments by frieda river reader)
A story of one mans life that took him from a village in China to the great cities of the world, a diffrent account than what I imagined not violent, repressive and overly horrible, rather a sad performance review of the Emporer Mao's way.

The story shows what a strong spirit and a desire to win can bring and what it means for a person to change and turn their back on all they know only to reach the heights never thought possible, a story of pain, pleasure and all in between a great read and one that will hold you unitll the last page
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Product Details

ISBN:
9780399150968
Publisher:
Berkley Trade
Location:
New York
Author:
Li, Cunxin
Author:
Cunxin, Li
Subject:
Entertainment & Performing Arts - Dancers
Subject:
Ballet dancers
Subject:
Defectors.
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Literary
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Series Volume:
no. 4
Publication Date:
20050301
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
480
Dimensions:
9.20x6.10x1.53 in. 1.67 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Dance » Biographies
Arts and Entertainment » Dance » General
Biography » General

Mao's Last Dancer
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 480 pages Putnam Publishing Group - English 9780399150968 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,

From a desperately poor village in northeast China, at age eleven, Li Cunxin was chosen by Madame Mao's cultural delegates to be taken from his rural home and brought to Beijing, where he would study ballet. In 1979, the young dancer arrived in Texas as part of a cultural exchange, only to fall in love with America-and with an American woman. Two years later, through a series of events worthy of the most exciting cloak-and-dagger fiction, he defected to the United States, where he quickly became known as one of the greatest ballet dancers in the world. This is his story, told in his own inimitable voice.

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