Read Čína se probouzí: boj o duši rozvíjející se mocnosti by Nicholas D. Kristof Alena Šmídová Sheryl WuDunn Online


Zpravodajové New York Times vyprávějí o osudech současné Číny a jejích obyvatel, 1988-1994....

Title : Čína se probouzí: boj o duši rozvíjející se mocnosti
Author :
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ISBN : 8085926113
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 440 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Čína se probouzí: boj o duši rozvíjející se mocnosti Reviews

  • Ensiform
    2019-03-03 19:33

    The authors, married Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times journalists, write about the emergence of capitalist China in the mid-1990s. Alternating authorship of the chapters, they analyze China in terms of its progress in the areas of civil rights and business in the face of government repression. The authors argue that the communist government is remarkably similar to those of past dynasties but that, given their entrepreneurial energy, Chinese people are living better now than ever before. At the time of the writing, the authors seemed unsure whether the communist government would last much longer, but their observations lead them to conclude that rotten as the whole system is, with its routine bribery and brutality, the slow change of Chinese culture indicates that the “dynasty” was not yet moribund. On a positive note, they see China as a nation that is beginning to appreciate the benefits of law, as well as material wealth, over imperial rule.A well written, perspicacious, trenchant series of observations, the book is an easy, accessible read that covers several issues of major interest to Western observers (human rights, pollution, energy production, women’s rights, modernization), relying heavily on "human interest" type stories; in this case, these are vignettes such as a retarded man who is beaten to death by police to clean up the streets of Beijing before the Olympics, a girl who is kidnapped and sold into slavery, a journalist friend who is jailed for criticizing the government, a political refugee turned smuggler, and so on. Their emphasis on the rotten aspects of the communist dynasty has drawn criticism from other reviewers, who say that a particular brand of corruption and specific scandals are hardly representative of any country, especially one as large and heterogeneous as China. However, the authors themselves note the limitations of their “human interest” approach; in one memorable passage they imagine that the tables are turned, and a Chinese journalist who covered an American beat strictly in terms of its horrifyingly violent street crime would be scandalized that despite the high murder rate, most Americans simply go about their everyday lives not thinking much about it, and the journalist would go away with a very skewed understanding of America. The book is also, inevitably, outdated, but remains a fascinating time capsule of the state of China watching post-Tiananmen Square.

  • Erika Jost
    2019-03-03 00:19

    This is not a good book. I don't know very much about China at all, but it was hard to trust these writers because the claims they made about the West were so off-base that I couldn't imagine that their grand and weirdly reductive claims about China were any more perceptive. This book was recommended to me by a friend and my favorite part of reading it was taking photos of insane passages and sending them to him as punishment.

  • Dan
    2019-03-18 21:29

    Now extremely dated, this text demands more scrutiny than it receives, and should be understood for what it is: a flawed and ultimately culturally-biased look at a country that Westerners (and particularly liberally-minded Westerners, I say this with no rancor towards liberalism) have difficulty understanding. This is a work of editorial journalism. It is not a work of academic rigor, and students reading it would do well to keep that fact in mind.We must acknowledge that China has demons: vicious, petty, and corrupt entities plague its government and bureaucracy, and its history is littered with the bodies of countless innocents. Yet the authors (Kristof in particular) approach China with a limited view. It is rare to find a nod toward the exploitation of China by foreign powers during the pre-communist era, nor is there any analysis of how this exploitation contributed to the rise of the Maoist regime. There's a great deal of discussion about how Confucianism lends itself to the 'uniquely Chinese' brand of government and viewpoint on business, about how the Chinese individual is culturally suited toward obedience. At several points this analysis veers toward racism, as when Kristof asserts that "corruption is one of the oldest problems in China" - corruption is one of the oldest problems in any nation on Earth. Word choice like this is discursively counterproductive and serves to leave the critical reader with a lingering sense that objectivity isn't paramount in the mind of the author.And this is the fundamental problem with China wakes: throughout the book the authors highlight problems that are nearly universal and imply or directly state that they are uniquely Chinese. Even during the Tiananmen Era, only the most naive American could have thought that a woman being coerced into sleeping with her boss was a singular event, one which could have only taken place in East Asia.And if these problems are so characteristic of China and Chinese culture, one wonders at the always-implicit assertion that things would be better if the pro-democracy movement were to take control of the government. Failures in education and public health systems are nothing new to democratic nations, and as our own recent history with real estate points out, corruption in the financial sector is by no means alien either.At the end of the day, China Wakes sets out to paint a picture: China is a weak, failing empire, and its only hope is the free-market zeitgeist and the clearly superior morality of its liberal intellectuals. The authors seek to convince the reader that China's communist-era art and culture are worthless and falling apart, providing nothing more than the broken soil in which the seed of democracy might take root. Obviously, the objective China watcher of today will find much to disagree with in the authors' arguments.

  • Kayo
    2019-02-24 20:29

    From someone who knows very little about China, I think this book gave me a very good starting point. I believe Nick Kristof and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, provided a relatively balanced view about China- they are both critical and yet optimistic about China. Although this book was written almost 20 years ago, I feel that it is still relevant, and a lot of the issues discussed in the book are still evident in China today. I look forward to reading about books about China and compare it to this one.

  • Jen
    2019-02-23 00:41

    I read this book in preparation for my trip to China. It was a fascinating book! My experience in China, and the little exposure I had to its people and government, confirmed the truth of the book for me. I found the book shocking, and subsequent personal experiences shared with me have again confirmed its veracity. In the end, I am so grateful I do not live there and government policies or otherwise have significantly affected the character, compassion, and morals of the Chinese citizens themselves.

  • Mike Cognato
    2019-03-15 18:26

    I don't know why people keep reading this book. It's out of date, not very interesting, and misses most of the big picture. All of which is amazing, since Kristof wrote some of his best stuff in China before he became a predictable and annoying NYT columnist.

  • Maia Espinosa
    2019-03-20 18:33

    I loved this book

  • Dan
    2019-03-12 22:40

    Have you been bored and/or patronized by Kristof's self-satisfaction and preaching in the New York Times? Take that vague feeling of being insulted home with you in book form!

  • Laura
    2019-02-27 23:26

    Informative. Kind of dated. Biased too for America over China in multiple ways that are constantly reiterated through the book. Doesn't really address neoliberal-economic policies such as low-wage, poor conditioned. factory jobs, and the role America plays in it.

  • Selfisher
    2019-03-03 18:33

    a real china in the other side

  • Bob
    2019-02-22 23:18

    I've always enjoyed the writing of Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. Their work as a married couple writing for The New York Times as well as their individual publications, including Sheryl WuDunn's Half the Sky have challenged many of us to think more deeply about human rights, and especially, injustices toward women.These same sensitivities are evident in this twenty year old work chronicling their years as correspondents for The New York Times in China. The book chronicles their time (1988-1993) during the democracy uprisings that led to Tiananmen Square and the beginnings of the economic boom that has worked a radical transformation upon the most populous nation on earth.It is a chronicle of the tensions such a transforming nation faces. We see through the eyes of dissidents as well as party members the corrupt and repressive face of Maoist and post-Maoist communism. We see the pervasive importance of quangxi, a form of social (and at times, financial) capital, in making one's way and getting ahead. Kristof (the authors alternate chapters) gives us an up close and personal account of the tragedy of Tiananmen, and with it an example of the courage journalists show in "getting the story". As well, we get an account of how the authors walked the fine line between the restrictions placed upon them as foreign journalists, and their efforts to circumvent those restrictions, including travel as tourists to see the realities of peasant villages--not the show villages the government would parade them through.Perhaps most insightful is their description of the transition from a totalitarian to an authoritarian rule that has occurred concurrent with China's economic boom. Another is their recognition of the high savings rate of the Chinese people that has provided the capital that has fueled that boom. And already in the early '90s, they describe the growing problems with air and water pollution that imperil the nation's health, the global climate, and is becoming in this day an increasing urgent reality that challenges the unfettered growth of the economy.The book made me curious to learn more about what the last twenty years have been like. It hasn't witnessed the crumbling of the Communist party or authoritarian rule. It has witnessed huge economic growth and growing international power and influence. It seems that many of the questions about China's future being asked in the book are still relevant--and unanswered.

  • Dorota
    2019-02-28 22:29

    This was an interesting account of a husband and wife team journalist experiences in China, up through 1993 - Kristof is an American writing for New York Times, and his wife is a Chinese American, giving us some interesting insights for the differences in treatment of both obvious and hidden perceptions of foreigners. The writing style of this one was a bit heavier and took much longer to digest - this one is still one I'm processing. Written at a time where it looked to many like China's steamrolling progress could go off the rails any day - the book teetered on opinion between optimistic and pessimistic about China's future. Lots has happened since then - the Olympics, Hong Kong, and the changes in economic structure both in the West and in China, but for someone looking to gain a starting point for understanding the history and culture of China, this was a worthwhile read. I learned a lot about more historical contexts of events such as the 5 Year Plan, the famines in China, the Great Leap Forward, Cultural Revolution, and some insight into the backgrounds of leaders like Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, and perceptions of the Communist party and leadership in China. And it was a great complement to some of the other less politically-oriented books I've been reading on China of late, many written around the same time: (Xinran's The Good Women of China as well as Pomfret's Chinese Lessons and DeWoskin's Foreign Babes books) - very interesting and helpful in grabbing some context for understanding the culture. A bit different was that unlike the other books which are written as stand-alone observational experience stories which don't necessarily try to draw conclusions for you about the events described, this one spends more time reporting about a country in transition (and guesses about where it's heading) so that I had to keep reminding myself that this book is quite outdated. It ends in 1994 and the rapid unprecedented changes that the book talks about have only continued to transform the country so that it is now a very different China, leaving it as unrecognizable today to what it had been at the time the book was published to the authors who were comparing the cultural and economical changes in China of then to the previous 20 years of pivotal changes in China's foreign and domestic policies.

  • Ashleigh
    2019-03-18 22:33

    This book is about a husband and wife reporters reporting in China. These two people witnessed and heard the stories of the corruption and violence that goes on in China from the higher ups and the regular people. They also learn about the history and how China came to be the country of what it is today. One of the stories the two reporters heard was a women who saw her brother die in front of her while the police didn't do anything while they could have. Also you get insight of how closely the police in China keep an eye on the two reporters and also since the wife is Chinese American how the higher ups act differently from people that look foreign and the people that don't. You also get insight on what happened at Tiananmen Square in 1989 from the husband who sat with the students and workers. The book has the opinions of the Chinese people and if there would be another uprising where the most bloodshed would be. But the book also points out how China is changing and going more freedom and people getting more knowledge about there country.The book is outdated yet still very informative about the country and the people. What made this book enjoyable was I could pick and choose any chapter of the book that I find interesting. I also like how each chapter targets a certain point of China a stays on that topic. There were also pictures that connects with what the chapter will target which can give a better picture of what is or was going on in China. They also give their honest opinions of the friends and the people they talked to. One example is how they said they thought that one of the people they regularly talked to was a spy from the Chinese government. From what the book was about and the delivery the book for me was overall wonderful and I would recommend this book for anyone who is interested in history of China or the world and someone who is interested in different types of government or the government in China.

  • Lori
    2019-03-02 18:18

    This books covers a wide array of topics, including human rights, the rise of communism, changing culture, graft, successes of the communist party, the Cultural Revolution, the burgeoning economy, foreign relations, and the list goes on. In every instance where it is necessary, the authors give appropriate historical background, often displaying their impressive knowledge of the political and cultural systems of other countries in their comparisons with those of China. They conclude their collection of stories with speculation about what the future holds for the government and economy of China, though they admit that "China watching is the only profession that makes meteorology look accurate and precise." Except for the unnecessary physical descriptions of (what seemed like) every person they wrote about, I enjoyed almost all of this book. The part I could absolutely have done without was an excerpt from a trashy Chinese novel which comes, without warning, at the beginning of the tenth chapter. But, mostly, I find myself wishing that their insights also covered the last decade, since so much has happened in China since they left Beijing. Great reading for anyone who wants to be better informed about China.

  • Elise
    2019-02-19 23:39

    China Wakes is a book about Nicholas Kristof and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn's time as foreign correspondents in China in the late 80s and early 90s. It is critical view of what life was like for them and those they came in contact with. This is not a proChina book and Kirstof and WuDunn do state their biases about their time overseas. Although they have a lot to say about the issues China faces and the corruption, they remain hopeful that China can become a prominent successful world leader if they get their act together.I found this book difficult to go through, it took me a long time to read it. That was mainly because there was so much information and so much of it was negative. I did really like that they looked at multiple aspects of life in China and that they switched off writing chapters and points of view. WuDunn is a Chinese American and that added to her experiences and she writes about what life might have been like for her if her grandfather had not gone overseas to America. If you are interested in China, it is definitely worth a read. It was well written and interesting just get ready for a lot of information.

  • Diana Marie
    2019-02-17 22:37

    I got this book while I was living in China and found it to be an important glimpse into Chinese history and society. Nicholas Kristoff and Sheryl WuDunn are the authors of this book, and it's an impressive compilation of their stories and experiences of working as journalists in the late 80's and 90's in China. They even won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.They talk about China's evolution from Communist China to the now booming Capitalist(ish) economy - bringing many people out of extreme poverty - but also with the tragic reality of many human rights violations. They talk about how strategic and sneaky they - and the people they interviewed - had to be to get out honest opinions and truthful stories. A lot of this resulted in being monitored by the government or unfortunate consequences for their informants.This book captures a time of history that Kristoff and WuDunn were able to unveil. At this point, this book is about 12 years outdated and China has continued changing, as has the rest of the world. I'd be curious to read a follow-up.

  • Vanda
    2019-03-02 21:13

    Báječná kniha, pro mě mnouhem poutavější než leckterá severská detektivka. Oba autoři se snažili o objektivitu do té míry, do jaké jsou toho západní liberálové schopni, často potírali své vlastní předsudky a popisovali i jevy, které zcela nesedly k obrazu "zlé čínské vlády", jakkoliv byl, obzvlášť po 4.6. 1989, nasnadě. Fascinující vhled do čínské společnosti první poloviny 90. let 20. století, do země, která si prošla obdobími nad pomyšlení krušnými, která je prolezlá korupcí tak, že si to ani nedovedeme představit, kde se pozvedly tisíce milionářů a zároveň stamiliony žily v nejhlubší chudobě, země ekonomického boomu a politické zakonzervovanosti, prostě země těžko uchopitelné, fascinující, děsivé i okouzlující. Je veliká škoda, že překlad je natolik nepovedený, že ruší při četbě, a některé odhady čínské budoucnosti se s odstupem dvaceti let mohou jevit mírně úsměvnými, ale celkově knihu hodnotím plným počtem hvězd. Pokud byste někdo měli tip na podobnou literaturu zabývající se současnější Čínou, česky nebo anglicky, sem s ním, prosím!

  • Kathleen Hulser
    2019-02-21 16:31

    Moving stories that probe the possibilities within the crushing bureaucracy of Chinese behemoth as cowboy capitalism rages, and the old Guard clutches power. What kind of place has a billion people, central planning and growth rates exceeding what used to be called "take-off" in the old studies of industrialization? What rules pertain, and what can human rights mean in the face of the gigantic threat of instability which seems to historically shadow every political trend in the waking giant? Still hard to understand, but one has to respect the extraordinary lengths to which Kristoff and Wudunn went to grasp the country, the obstacles to progress and the shape of its emerging politics. Amazing how accurate some of their post-Tiananmen predictions have been -- astonishing growth, and reluctant or cosmetic attention to personal liberty. Pollution, crass materialism, pent-up discontent and, as usual, incoherent or non-existent US-China policy are as pertinent now as when they wrote in mid-1990s.

  • Brendan Hodge
    2019-03-12 00:15

    Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn (husband and wife writers for the NY Times) write a first hand description of the rise of modern China which is fascinating and compelling. It's a bit out of date now, and I wish they would do an updated edition or a sequel, but it does provide a lot of very helpful ways of looking at things in relation to modern China. In particular:- Business and freedom do not necessarily go together in China, nor are capitalism and communist party rule seen as incompatible. (Often, it's the party leaders running the biggest businesses.)- China is perhaps the only case in history in which a communist regime has morphed into a nationalist/semi-fascist regime with no formal change in leadership-Any Western understanding of what's going on in China is limited by the difficulty of understanding what is going on in the countryside, in a country in which despite massive urbanization the majority of the population are still peasants, and peasants provide the backbone of support for Party rule.

  • Lisa
    2019-02-17 19:13

    Like any of the heavy (as in content, not weight) books I read, it takes a bit of time to digest what I'm reading so it takes a while before I am actually done with the book. Great coverage of topics related to social issues and development in China. I have discussed with my dad (chinese dude who immigrated out of China) about the human rights issues and corruption. He thinks it's mostly taken out of context (I don't agree with that) and that there are more good than bad in China (I sort of agree with that). As a reader, you don't get that sense of perspective from the authors until you're more than half way through the book. For the first half of the book, the authors sound like deers caught in the headlights.So far so good...will add more to review when I'm actually done with the book.

  • Sarah Mansour
    2019-03-01 19:41

    China Wakes is an incredible book. Nick and Sheryl take you through their 5-year adventure, based in Beijing, where they take you around China from Tibet to Guangdong. Even though the book is written in 94 (afterword in 97) but it well stands the test of time. They tried to reach out to the local people, from journalists, to University professors, to peasants and interview them about their lives and views, and for that they did a great job. However they were unfortunate to get the other side of the story from the officials for instance, the current ones, which is a shame but understandable. Very easy and enjoyable read. Highly recommended for people interested in human rights in general. If you're well informed about political sciences in China then you may not find lots of new things in the book, but it will surely not be a waste of time.

  • Maggie
    2019-03-13 16:43

    I took a break from HATING Kristof to read this book while I was studying in China. His wife Cheryl WuDunn is co-author of this book and they alternate chapters. They were both New York Times journalists living in China before, during, and after the 1989 Tienanmen Square massacre. Its fascinating to hear their experiences with state censorship/coercion and on-the-ground accounts of what happened. I also learned a lot about the history of the 5 Year Plan, Great Leap Forward, Cultural Revolution, and the personal exploits of Mao and other Communist rulers. I'd recommend this to anyone interested in learning more about Chinese history in an accessible and non-academic text, and to someone who can look past Kristof's self-important, oblivious to western privilege stance.

  • Carol
    2019-03-12 00:40

    This book changed my view of China. When I moved here, I met so many wonderful people and I felt it was almost idyllic. Then I read the book and saw so much of what was behind the scenes. I think President Hinckley would call these authors "pickle suckers." However, it did open my eyes to some of the issues at play in people's every day lives. It's a different world in China than in the Western World. That said, people are people and I recognize every day that the everyday people of China are wonderful. If you read this book, you will come out with a very tainted view of China which I don't think is realistic. Sure there are difficult things about China, but all countries have their issues.

  • Joseph
    2019-02-17 18:32

    Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn skillfully walk a thin line between being critical of China's rise economically while addressing the oppression and corruption within the government. I am reading this book 20 years after publication so it is a little outdated and made it challenging to reconcile what Kristof and WuDunn say versus what is happening in China now. Kristof/WuDunn brings up that any Chinese journalist could come to the United States and talk about the problems of crime and gun control that this country has while ignoring much of the good in the US. This is often the lens that people see China and I think Kristof/WuDunn did well to holistically look at China and its opening up since the late 1970s.

  • Mary
    2019-03-10 21:35

    I read this book while I was living in China. I lent it to a friend who never returned it. Decided to reread it as I enjoyed it so much the first time that I read it. It gives an American view on where China was during the 1980s & early '90s in terms of politics & culture. Well worth the read if you're interested in China &/or are planning a visit. BTW, it's written by NYT a op-ed columnist, Nick Kristof, who has received 2 Pulitzers along with his wife Sheryl WuDunn. Very well written & easy to read.

  • Jenny
    2019-02-17 19:26

    If you are interested in Chinese history, I highly recommend this book. It is written by a husband/wife team of NY Times foreign correspondents sent to Beijing shortly before the Tienanmen Square massacre. It includes intriguing stories of the journalists being followed, bugged, threatened. Also included are historical anecdotes to assist in putting stories into perspective. China has an appalling track of human rights abuses. This book does a great job in putting faces to just a few of those atrocities. The only reason I didn't give it 5-stars is that it just got a bit long.

  • Kim
    2019-02-27 19:36

    This is a great book, a very interesting and engaging read, about the myriad issues plaguing Chinese society. Although the book was written back in the 1990s and some things have changed so much since then (it IS China, after all), Kristof and his wife, Sheryl Wu Dunn, do hit on a lot of the most important issues and provide historical context, while trying to also tell the human side of the story. My only complaint would be that some sections seem a little sensationalist and meant to shock the reader... the accounts of cannibalism during the Great Leap Forward, for example.

  • Andy
    2019-02-18 17:30

    A really engaging insider's view of a rapidly changing China. I particularly enjoyed the chapters on political dissent, women, and the peasantry in post-reform China, although the other accounts--especially those gathered from biographical interviews--were also fascinating. For me, Sheryl Wudunn provides a much more nuanced, and less ethnocentric, perspective about Chinese society than does her husband. Overall, however, this is a really well-researched book that is a must-read for those interested in social change in contemporary China.

  • Sarah
    2019-03-08 16:35

    China Wakesis an incredibly insightful piece of life in 1980s/1990s China. Although it may be a bit outdated, even 20 years later, it seems that China still struggles with some of the same issues highlighted in the book (such as human rights, the relationship between Communism and Capitalism, and corruption). It's a great read if you are eager to delve deeper into the Chinese political system.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-02-28 16:26

    I wasn't sure what to expect from Kristof in this journalistic look at China, and was pleasantly surprised to see him as decent journalist instead of op-ed writer. The book - chapters alternatively written by Kristof and his wife Sheryl Wudunn, a notable journalist in her own right) is outdated (1995), but still an interesting and, in some cases, prescient look at China on the rise. I particularly appreciated Kristof's account of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.