Synopses & Reviews
A new edition with a new forward by the author. "Wild Swans" tells the
gripping story of how three generations of women in her family fared in
the political maelstrom of China during the 20th century. Chang's grandmother
was a warlord's concubine. Her mother struggled with hardships in the early
days of Mao's revolution and rose to a prominent position in the Communist
Party before being denounced during the Cultural Revolution. Chang herself
marched for Mao until doubt crept in over the excesses of his policies
and purges. Born just a few decades apart, their lives overlap with the
end of the warlords' regime and overthrow of the Japanese occupation, the
Communists to carve up China, and, most poignant for the author, the vicious
cycle of purges orchestrated by Chairman Mao that discredited and crushed
millions of people, including her parents.
Carolyn See Newsday Wild Swans is riveting. It's blindingly good: a mad adventure story, a fairy tale of courage, and a tale of atrocities. You can't, as they say, put it down.
The New Yorker Her family chronicle resembles a popular novel that stars strong, beautiful women and provides cameo roles for famous men....But Wild Swans is no romance. It's a story...about the survival of a Chinese family through a century of disaster.
Time A mesmerizing memoir.
"An inspiring tale of women who survived every kind of hardship, deprivation and political upheaval with their humanity intact." --Hillary Clinton, O, The Oprah Magazine
Blending the intimacy of memoir and the panoramic sweep of eyewitness history, Wild Swans
has become a bestselling classic in thirty languages, with more than ten million copies sold. The story of three generations of women in twentieth-century China, it is an engrossing record of Mao's impact on China, an unusual window on the female experience in the modern world, and an inspiring tale of courage and love.
Chang captures in gripping, moving -- and ultimately uplifting -- detail the cycles of violent drama visited on her family and millions of others caught in the whirlwind of history.
About the Author
Jung Chang was born in Yibin, Sichuan Province, China, in 1952. She left China for Britain in 1978 and obtained a Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of York in 1982, the first person from the People’s Republic of China to receive a doctorate from a British university. She lives in London with her husband, Jon Halliday, with whom she wrote Mao: The Unknown Story.