January 30, 2000 |
The Qing emperors of China would probably have been pleased to know that one day the objects of their daily life, from the sublime to the ridiculous, would be venerated in the West. In the 19th century, Western powers and their demands for trade and privilege were the bane of the Qing court--and ultimately contributed to the downfall of imperial rule.
October 1, 1999 |
Wang Xinzhou's son will probably never walk again, not after doctors at a local hospital botched treatment of his broken leg--twice. First they reset the bone so badly that the splintered ends failed to join up. A second operation was even more disastrous, triggering an infection that festered, undetected, beneath the cast for nearly half a year. The young man was finally sent home with a right leg 2 inches shorter than the left and unable to bend at the knee.
August 6, 1999 |
Taiwan made headlines again Thursday, but the story wasn't about heated political rhetoric or jet fighters flying across the Taiwan Strait. And the famous face staring tauntingly from the front pages here wasn't of that "troublemaker," Taiwanese President Lee Teng-hui. Instead, it was A-Mei, a Taiwanese pop star who landed in the Chinese capital this week for a series of hugely hyped concerts. And the media coverage couldn't have been more effusive.
May 22, 1999 |
The average Chinese ate nearly five times as much meat last year as before economic reform began in 1979, and more than eight times as many eggs, a newspaper said Friday. Figures reported by the Farmers Daily highlight the explosion in the diversity and size of the Chinese diet, driven by growing prosperity after decades of scarcity and near-starvation. Chinese on average ate 94 pounds of meat last year, 4.8 times the level of 1978, the newspaper said. It said egg consumption rose 8.
May 8, 1999 |
When more than 10,000 demonstrators gathered here recently on behalf of the spiritual group Falun Gong--the largest such gathering since the 1989 pro-democracy protests in Tiananmen Square--Chinese leaders were stunned. Now, the government is cautiously moving to control disciples of the Falun Gong, or Wheel of Law, group, along with other forms of the ancient system of meditative exercise known as qigong.
February 17, 1999 |
This is China's Year of the Rabbit. It is also a year of fateful Chinese anniversaries. The important question for the rest of the world is whether this could be a year of political unrest and social upheaval, too, in the world's most populous nation. A few days ago, a Chinese newspaper, the Economic Times, reported that under what it called "the most conservative estimates," unemployment has now reached 9.3% in Chinese cities. The paper helpfully added: "This is far below the actual number."
January 19, 1999 |
Musician Xuan Ke spent 21 years in prison because of his love for Beethoven. And in the concrete stillness of his cell, he realized two things that would change his life: that music has the power to overcome fear, and that it must never be allowed to die. He came home from prison in 1978 to an eerie silence here in his village, a place of poets and musicians.
December 26, 1998 |
Alacuo, an 18-year-old beauty in this tradition-bound village, wants to do something radical. She wants to get married and settle down. "My mother thinks I should be like her and have several lovers," Alacuo says. "But I want someone who will stay with me all the time." Alacuo lives in China's legendary "women's kingdom," a matriarchal society of about 47,000 people that thrives on the shores of Lugu Lake in a remote corner of southern China.
December 2, 1998 |
When he gave up a Pomona cauliflower farm and moved back to his native China for family reasons in 1925, Gin Gee Tong figured he would return to Southern California one day. But U.S. restrictions against Chinese immigration blocked an escape from war and revolution. Tortured by the new Communist regime, he died a broken man in 1952, buried at first without even a coffin in an unmarked grave near Guangzhou.
November 22, 1998 |
In Liu Chunlan's remote hamlet in the rolling hills of Sichuan, the old folks used to tell her that girls were a curse. Raising a daughter only to marry her off to another family was like fattening a hog for someone else's banquet, they'd say. Spending money on a girl was like scattering seed to the wind. Here, as in thousands of villages across China, boys were prized: They did heavy farm labor, bore the family name and cared for their parents in their old age.