Critics, including Fang Zhouzi, have taken apart the book Bend, Not Break: A Life in Two Worlds by the US CEO Fu Ping. Her ‘rags to rich’ story contained too many unbelievable stories. Fellow author Zhang Lijia went through the book, and on her weblog she sides with the critics. “Too many holes to make it believable.”
Several things particularly don’t ring truth. First of all, the tale of her teacher being ‘quartered by four horses’. One only heard the brutal method of killing from ancient books but no one has ever such it be practiced in modern ear. It sounds too implausible.
In a radio interview, Ms Fu claimed that she saw with her own eyes how babies were being ‘tossed into the river’. Impossible. Infant infanticides did take place and still do, less commonly, in the countryside, but they are never being carried out in public. I don’t think false memory should take the blame. You may get the publication wrong or the dates wrong but one never forgets a dramatic event such as witness a brutal killing…
There are enough mis-understandings and myths about [the Cultural Revolution]. Ms Fu’s tales could only add the confusion.
Fang Zhouzi pointed out that such fabricated stories can only fool laowai – foreigners. They can probably please them as well. Hence the effort to self-victimize and self-dramatize.
More on Zhang Lijia’s weblog, including John Kennedy’s blog in the South China Morning post.
Zhang Lijia is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need her at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch or fill in our speakers’ request form.
Last week at the +China Weekly Hangout +Paul Fox and +Fons Tuinstra discussed the program for the coming month in the year of the snake, including a session on Hong Kong media scene, China’s answer to North-Korea and its international position, again the accessibility of the internet and social issues in China.
- Lessons from the Sino-Vietnam war – Zhang Lijia (chinaspeakersbureau.info)
- Changing mindset on domestic violence – Zhang Lijia (chinaspeakersbureau.info)
- Will free unions work at Foxconn? – Zhang Lijia (chinaherald.net)
- Be careful in the year of the snake – Zhang Lijia (chinaherald.net)
- Celebrity divorce points at weak position women – Zhang Lijia (chinaspeakersbureau.info)