Apologies to My Censor: The High and Low Adventures of a Foreigner in China

And Then There Were Nuns at the library
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Martin Booth's compelling memoir, the last book he completed before dying, glows with infectious curiosity and humor and is an intimate representation of the now extinct time and place of his growing up. Account Options Sign in. Top charts. New arrivals. A true believer--and one of only two Westerners permitted to enroll at Beijing University--her education included wielding a pneumatic drill at the Number One Machine Tool Factory. She also met and married the only American draft dodger from the Vietnam War to seek asylum in China.

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Red China Blues is Wong's startling--and ironic--memoir of her rocky six-year romance with Maoism which crumbled as she became aware of the harsh realities of Chinese communism ; her dramatic firsthand account of the devastating Tiananmen Square uprising; and her engaging portrait of the individuals and events she covered as a correspondent in China during the tumultuous era of capitalist reform under Deng Xiaoping.

In a frank, captivating, deeply personal narrative she relates the horrors that led to her disillusionment with the "worker's paradise. In setting out to show readers in the Western world what life is like in China, and why we should care, she reacquaints herself with the old friends--and enemies of her radical past, and comes to terms with the legacy of her ancestral homeland. It has been translated into Swedish, Finnish, Dutch, and Japanese, and optioned for a feature film.

A third-generation resident of Montreal, Ms.

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I sat down, my face hot. After the ceremony they took a photograph to commemorate the event. In the picture, the Long Marchers and the cadres are standing proudly in three rows, carefully spaced, and the faded red banner is unfurled in the style of the old revolutionary units. The Fuling Long Marchers wear clean white T-shirts and red ribbons on their chests.

They are not smiling. The most important cadres stand in the front row, along with Adam and me. Adam is wearing sandals and I have on an old gray T-shirt, and our bare legs interrupt the row of neat trousers. None of the other cadres is smiling.

Review: Apologies To My Censor: The High & Low Adventures of a Foreigner in China

There are no women in the photograph. But where to begin? To explain why the post-Cultural Revolution college was honoring the Long March was as difficult as telling how the mountains had been turned into terraces. Finally I would say: This was a political assembly at our college, and our participation was a surprise, because in most parts of the world Peace Corps volunteers are not welcomed with Communist Party rallies.

And I left it at that—that was my story of the photograph. Of course, none of it was that simple.


Nothing was quite what it seemed, and that was how life went in those early days, everything uncertain and half a step off. In Chinese, Peace Corps was Heping Dui , and there was more to those three simple characters than met the eye.

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Apologies to My Censor: The High and Low Adventures of a Foreigner in China Paperback – July 2, Mitch Moxley came to Beijing in the spring of to take a job as a writer and editor for China Daily, the country's only English-language national newspaper. The Chinese economy. The story of a young man's outrageous adventures in China an Apologies to My Censor: The High and Low Adventures of a Foreigner in China.

These things were no longer said, but the echoes still remained, and the word was hopelessly tainted. But the Chinese language, like the people, had learned to shift with the political winds, and another title was found when the Peace Corps came to China in — Meizhong Youhou Zhiyuanzhe , U.

Mitch Moxley

The characters were more complicated but the connotations infinitely simpler. And so with a euphemism for a job title, I came to teach at a college that was built on the ashes of the Cultural Revolution, where history was never far away and politics everywhere you looked. It was the Friendship that terrified all of us at the beginning. That was the part of the title that was difficult to translate or interpret. The college had had three foreign teachers the year before, an elderly Australian couple and a middle-aged man from Mexico, but that had been simpler because they were there for less than a year and rarely strayed far from campus.

We were different—we were young, we were planning to live in Fuling for two years, and we had been sent by the American government as part of the third group of Peace Corps volunteers to come to China. The college gave us apartments in its best building, where the Communist Party Secretary and the other most important cadres lived, and for weeks they banqueted us almost every other night.

There was a protocol to these affairs. We would sit down to a table full of Chinese appetizers—cashews, dried beef, string beans, lotus root—and often Teacher Han would make an announcement. He was the interim representative of the college waiban , or foreign affairs office, and he was twenty-seven years old. He had the best spoken English in the college, but he was an uneasy young man in a new position of authority.

He asked us to call him Albert. The college has decided, he said, to buy you telephones that can call outside the college. You will be able to call anywhere in China.