The Man Who Stayed Behind

Front Cover
Duke University Press, Apr 3, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 476 pages
12 Reviews
The Man Who Stayed Behind is the remarkable story of Sidney Rittenberg, an American student activist and labour organiser who joined the military, became fluent in Chinese, was sent to China by the U.S. military in the 1940s, became caught up in the turbulence that engulfed that country, and remained there until the late 1970s. Here he tells how he argued dogma with Mao Zedong, mused philosophy with Zhou Enlai, and danced with Mao's wife, Jiang Qing. But he also gives a harrowing account of his struggle over madness and despair in prison during six years in solitary confinement on trumped-up spy charges. A decade later he was sent back to be confined alongside other political prisoners who fell afoul of the dominant faction during the Cultural Revolution. There is also the touching love story of Rittenberg's Chinese wife, Yulin, who pledged to wait for ten years for the man she loved. Both a memoir and a documentary history of the Chinese revolution from 1949 through the Cultural Revolution, The Man Who Stayed Behind provides a human perspective on China's efforts to build a new society. Critical of both his own mistakes and those of the Communist leadership, Rittenberg offers both a compelling personal story and a poignant and thought-provoking exploration of some of the most profound political and moral issues of the twentieth century.
  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
6
4 stars
5
3 stars
1
2 stars
0
1 star
0

Review: The Man Who Stayed Behind

User Review  - Rob - Goodreads

Interesting, but with no background in Chinese history, skimming a few wikipedia articles first would have been useful. Read full review

Review: The Man Who Stayed Behind

User Review  - Riley - Goodreads

Sidney Rittenberg was an American Communist from South Carolina who learned Chinese as a World War II draftee and ended up living there through the 1970s. This memoir shows both his idealism about ... Read full review

Contents

VIII
17
IX
37
X
54
XI
73
XII
99
XIII
115
XIV
137
XV
158
XXI
276
XXII
301
XXIII
314
XXIV
333
XXV
354
XXVI
370
XXVII
389
XXVIII
409

XVI
173
XVII
186
XVIII
203
XIX
222
XX
239
XXIX
433
XXX
447
XXXI
457
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 4 - This, in far too abbreviated form, is the author's answer to "the harmonious balance between the rights of the individual and the claims of the community to which he belongs.

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2001)

DIV

Sidney Rittenberg is President of Rittenberg Associates, Incorporated—a China consulting firm. He resides on Fox Island, Washington, with his wife, Yulin.

Amanda Bennett is Managing Editor of The Oregonian in Portland, Oregon and former Bureau Chief of the Wall Street Journal in Atlanta.

/div

Bibliographic information