My First Trip to China
Thirty leading China experts, including Perry Link (Princeton Univeristy), Andrew Nathan (Columbia University), Jonathan Mirsky (Times of London), W. J. F. Jenner, Lois Wheeler Snow, and Morton Abramowitz (The Century Foundation), recount their first visit to China, recalling their initial observations and impressions. Most first traveled to China when it was still closed to the world, or was just beginning to open. Their subsequent opinions, writings, and policies have shaped the Western relationship with China for more than a generation. This is essential reading for those who want to understand the evolution of Western attitudes toward modern China. At the same time, the collection provides a vivid, personal window onto a fascinating period in Chinese history.
- Paperback | 320 pages
- 181 x 181 x 24mm | 532g
- 19 Feb 2013
- East Slope Publishing Limited
- New York, Hong Kong
To collect the stories of first encounters with China was a brilliant idea. Not only do we get the benefit of many fascinating insights (and hindsights) from a range of foreigners and overseas Chinese, but these deftly edited views from the outside make up one great story: the history of Communist China. More than a history of one damned thing happening after another, this is a history of perceptions, lies, myths, and revelations, as much about China as her rulers wish it to be seen as about those who have chosen to see China, more and sometimes less clearly, over the last half century. -- Ian Buruma, author of Bad Elements: Chinese Rebels from Los Angeles to Beijing The opening of China to the world, and then of the world to China, is one of modern history's most consequential stories. That story is told in a fresh, innovative fashion in this insightful collection of personal experiences related by a distinguished collection of historians, diplomats, journalists, political writers, and others who ventured behind the Bamboo Curtain early on. Leading the way are disillusioned leftists stunned by the horrors of the Cultural Revolution and Mao's Great Leap Forward. They gradually give way to knowing observers of a tumultuous society determined to become once again a world power. Their accounts form an impressionistic vision of epochal change taking place on the gallop. -- Jim Hoagland, contributing editor, The Washington Post This is a wistful and absorbing volume and a fitting remembrance for all of us who once thought that China was going to be easy to study. -- Jonathan Spence, author of The Search for Modern China My First Trip to China offers an engaging array of first encounters. -- Charles Foran Asian Review of Books [A] wonderful book that manages to be a great read for the China novice, the China expert, and everyone in between. -- Elizabeth Economy Asia Unbound The richness of the book lies in the variety of accounts by people of different nationalities and professions and at different times in history. -- Mark O'Neill South China Morning Post An absorbing and entertaining volume. It is also an illuminating one... My First Trip to China invites readers to relive those voyages of discovery and to reflect on the complexities of modern-day China, whose new openness, material progress and limited freedoms were unimaginable just a generation ago. -- Melanie Kirkpatrik Wall Street Journal Vivid and revealing... Liu has performed a great service in collecting these memories. Fortune [My First Trip to China] provides insightful and often entertaining early glimpses into the Middle Kingdom. -- Frederik Balfour Bloomberg Businessweek A collection of 30 vignettes from a veritable who's who of China experts relating their initial encounters with 'the Promised Land.' -- John Pomfret Foreign Affairs
About Kin-ming Liu
Kin-ming Liu is a China File Fellow at the Asia Society's Center on U.S.-China Relations. A former chairman of the Hong Kong Journalists Association, he has worked for Apple Daily and Hong Kong Economic Journal and is currently with the South China Morning Post.