Out of Mao's Shadow: The Struggle for the Soul of a New China

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Simon and Schuster, Jun 17, 2008 - History - 448 pages
14 Reviews
From an award-winning journalist for The Washington Post and one of the leading China correspondents of his generation comes an eloquent and vivid chronicle of the world's most successful authoritarian state -- a nation undergoing a remarkable transformation.

Philip P. Pan's groundbreaking book takes us inside the dramatic battle for China's soul and into the lives of individuals struggling to come to terms with their nation's past -- the turmoil and trauma of Mao's rule -- and to take control of its future. Capitalism has brought prosperity and global respect to China, but the Communist government continues to resist the demands of its people for political freedom.

Pan, who reported in China for the Post for seven years and speaks fluent Chinese, eluded the police and succeeded in going where few Western journalists have dared.

From the rusting factories in the industrial northeast to a tabloid newsroom in the booming south, from a small-town courtroom to the plush offices of the nation's wealthiest tycoons, he tells the gripping stories of ordinary men and women fighting for political change. An elderly surgeon exposes the government's cover-up of the SARS epidemic. A filmmaker investigates the execution of a young woman during the Cultural Revolution. A blind man is jailed for leading a crusade against forced abortions carried out under the one-child policy.

The young people who filled Tiananmen Square in the spring of 1989 saw their hopes for a democratic China crushed in a massacre, but Pan reveals that as older, more pragmatic adults, many continue to push for justice in different ways. They are survivors whose families endured one of the world's deadliest famines during the Great Leap Forward, whose idealism was exploited during the madness of the Cultural Revolution, and whose values have been tested by the booming economy and the rush to get rich.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - xuebi - LibraryThing

Out of Mao's Shadow tells the stories of individuals caught up in the chaotic transition China is undergoing from a Maoist state to a modern player in the global economy, a capitalist authoritarian ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - rivkat - LibraryThing

Super-interesting book about modern China via various profiles, from party bosses to human rights lawyers to construction moguls. The rule of law as a concept lacks most meaning, but some people are ... Read full review

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Contents

The Public Funeral
3
Searching for Lin Zhaos Soul
21
Blood and Love
49
The Cemetery
81
Arise Slaves Arise
113
The Rich Lady
147
The Party Boss
175
The Honest Doctor
199
The Newspaperman
235
The Peoples Trial
269
Blind Justice
295
Epilogue
319
Note on Sources
327
Acknowledgments
335
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Philip P. Pan is a foreign correspondent for The Washington Post and the newspaper's former Beijing bureau chief. During his tour in China from 2000 to 2007 he won the Livingston Award for Young Journalists in international reporting, the Overseas Press Club's Bob Considine Award for best newspaper interpretation of international affairs, and the Asia Society's Osborn Elliott Prize for Excellence in Journalism on Asia. He is a graduate of Harvard College and studied Chinese at Peking University. He lives with his wife and son in New York and will begin a new assignment for the Post in Moscow in 2008.

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