Socialism is Great !   A Worker's Memoir of the New China

Socialism is Great ! A Worker's Memoir of the New China

Product ID: 26324

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Author: Lijia Zhang
Publisher: HarperCollins
Year: 2008
Language: English
Pages: 284
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9788172238049


A spirited memoir by a former Chinese factory worker, who grew up in Nanjing, participated in the Tianamen Square protest and ended up as an international journalist.

Lijia Zhang worked as a teenager in a factory producing missiles designed to reach North America, queuing every month to give evidence to the 'period police' that she wasn't pregnant.

In the oppressive routine of guarded compounds and political meetings, Zhang grew disillusioned with 'The Glorious Cause' and set out to learn English. She flaunted her intellectual independence from wearing bright, Western style clothes to organizing the largest demonstration by Nanjing workers in support of Tiananmen Square protest in 1989.

By narrating the changes in her own life, Zhang chronicles the momentous shift in China's economic policy: her factory, still an ICBM manufacturer, won the bid to cast a giant Bronze Buddha as the whole country went crazy for profit.

Socialism is great! Is a testament to Zhang's personal triumph over the controlled existence that was supposed to be her destiny?


'… a rare and intimate glimpse of a country and culture that are now reshaping our world' - Pankaj Mishra

‘Lijia Zhang’s book is gentle, funny and wry. A lovely addition to some very fine contemporary writing coming out of China. I enjoyed it tremendously’.
- Arundhati Roy

‘Socialism is Great! Is guaranteed to leave you moved and uplifted Lijia Zhang’s determination to make the life she wanted’.
- Hari kunzru



1. Inheritance
2. The Weight of Adulthood
3. Masters of the Nation
4. Raw rice has been Cooked
5. The Liming Empire
6. Spring Outing
7. Seize the Moment
8. The Long hair Drama
9. Weijia
10. Would-be Model
11. Quite Please, Comrades
12. Sacred Mountain
13. Red Rock
14. Fortress Besieged
15. Journey to the North
16. Falling back into the Well
17. Home at War
18. Missiles and Misty Poems
19. A tool of Struggle
20. The English Corner
21. Clouds and Rain
22. An Unsettling feather
23. Party Passport
24. The Phoenix Feather
25. A city on the Sea
26. Jasmine
27. Storm
28. The third Party
29. The Incident in the Park
30. Begging for Happiness
31. Troubled Smile
32. Fish and Bear Paw
33. Unwanted Joy
34. The Ocean Beckons
35. Leniency to those who Confess