China in Ten Words

Front Cover
Pantheon Books, Nov 8, 2011 - History - 225 pages
4 Reviews

From one of China's most acclaimed writers, his first work of nonfiction to appear in English: a unique, intimate look at the Chinese experience over the last several decades, told through personal stories and astute analysis that sharply illuminate the country's meteoric economic and social transformation.

Framed by ten phrases common in the Chinese vernacular-"people," "leader," "reading," "writing," "Lu Xun" (one of the most influential Chinese writers of the twentieth century), "disparity," "revolution," "grassroots," "copycat," and "bamboozle"-China in Ten Words reveals as never before the world's most populous yet oft-misunderstood nation. In "Disparity," for example, Yu Hua illustrates the mind-boggling economic gaps that separate citizens of the country. In "Copycat," he depicts the escalating trend of piracy and imitation as a creative new form of revolutionary action. And in "Bamboozle," he describes the increasingly brazen practices of trickery, fraud, and chicanery that are, he suggests, becoming a way of life at every level of society.

Characterized by Yu Hua's trademark wit, insight, and courage, China in Ten Words is a refreshingly candid vision of the "Chinese miracle" and all its consequences, from the singularly invaluable perspective of a writer living in China today.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - danoomistmatiste - LibraryThing

A funny book but at the same time a book that talks about the grim reality of the cost of progress. It is not a good sign when the country's richest get arrested on charges of fraud and embezzlement ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bradleybleck - LibraryThing

Hua examines contemporary China through the meaning of ten words, relating each to stories of his life and work that led him to becoming the writer and thinker he is today. Hua provides insight to Chinese life over the last several decades. Read full review


Qjjflil Leader
53l Lu Xun
iirlff Revolution
Effl Grassroots
Ill Copycat

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About the author (2011)

Yu Hua is the author of four novels, six collections of stories, and three collections of essays. His work has been translated into more than twenty languages. In 2002, he became the first Chinese writer to win the James Joyce Award. His novel Brothers was short-listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize and awarded France's Prix Courrier International. To Live was awarded Italy's Premio Grinzane Cavour, and To Live and Chronicle of a Blood Merchant were ranked among the ten most influential books in China in the 1990's by Wen Hui Bao, the largest newspaper in Shanghai. Yu Hua lives in Beijing.

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