Just finished reading John Pomfret’s Chinese Lessons. Suggested by my dad, it’s a wonderful book for those interested in how China is changing and has changed over the past three decades. Pomfret recounts the stories of his Chinese classmates when he was an exchange student at one of China’s top universities in the early 1980s. Stories of the Cultural Revolution can shatter the heart but also provide insight into the character of the Chinese people today. Pomfret, who was one of the first Americans to enter China after it normalized relations in 1979 and was among the first to be kicked out in 1989 for witnessing the Tiananmen incident firsthand, then travels back to China for a class reunion to catch up with his classmates and observes how the last 20 years have changed China and them.
Maybe now I’ll have time for some National Geographic magazine reading. The last issue I’ve finished is probably April.