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The Good Women of China: Hidden Voicesby Xinran
Synopses & Reviews
When Deng Xiaoping’s efforts to “open up” China took root in the late 1980s, Xinran recognized an invaluable opportunity. As an employee for the state radio system, she had long wanted to help improve the lives of Chinese women. But when she was given clearance to host a radio call-in show, she barely anticipated the enthusiasm it would quickly generate. Operating within the constraints imposed by government censors, “Words on the Night Breeze” sparked a tremendous outpouring, and the hours of tape on her answering machines were soon filled every night. Whether angry or muted, posing questions or simply relating experiences, these anonymous women bore witness to decades of civil strife, and of halting attempts at self-understanding in a painfully restrictive society. In this collection, by turns heartrending and inspiring, Xinran brings us the stories that affected her most, and offers a graphically detailed, altogether unprecedented work of oral history.
Drawing on personal interviews with, anecdotes by, and experiences of modern Chinese women at all levels of society, this fascinating study looks at what it means to be a woman in today's China and the political, social, cultural, and personal upheavals they have endured in a complex and repressive society. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.
Xinran was born in Beijing in 1958. In 1997 she moved to London. This is her first book.
Table of Contents
Prologue — My journey towards the stories of Chinese women — The girl who kept a fly as a pet — The university student — The scavenger woman — The mothers who endured an earthquake — What Chinese women believe — The woman who loved women — The woman whose marriage was arranged by the revolution — My mother — The woman who waited forty-five years — The Guomindang general's daughter — The childhood I cannot leave behind me — The woman whose father does not know her — A fashionable woman — The women of Shouting Hill — Epilogue — Acknowledgements.
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History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology