Thursday, June 28, 2012

On Reading China

Today, I have a guest post over at the lovely Reading the World blog. I hope you have all added Sarah's "literary Grand Tour" to your regular reads by now. It's a great concept for a blog and I've enjoyed all her other posts so far. My article is on reading about China. Here's a taste...

The China of novels is a land of ancient traditions, elegant hills covered in mist, and communal courtyards betwixt peak-roofed houses. In the China of novels, at least all the novels I read before my first visit in 2008, women have bound feet and pale, lotus faces, and men toil in rice paddies with honor and duty on their shoulders. The history, the poetry, the very language is full of mystery and inscrutable beauty.

The China of newspapers is frightening. It owns our debt, our means of production, our competition. It’s a place of mystery too, dogged by a recent history of shattering need, death, and whispered oppression. The China of newspapers is a threat and a crutch.

Between the China of novels and the China of newspapers lies a third China. Read the rest...

Tomorrow, I'll wrap up this little blog tour for The Olympics Beat with a list of all the places I've hopped around the internet lately and a request for help.

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