Philip Martin

Philip Martin History 242 04/12/00 Wild Swans The title of this book is called Wild Swans. The author is Jung Chang. This book was published November 1992. This book was published in Bantam Doubleday Dell publishing Group in New York and has 500 plus pages. Jung Chang was born in Yibin, Sichunan Province, China, in 1952.

Jung Chang was a Red Guard until she was fourteen years old. Later she worked as a peasant. Jung Chang was also a “Barefoot Doctor”. Those were the people who tried to help people with the minimum training that they had. Jung Chang was also a steelworker, and an electrician. Later Jung Chang became an English-language student and, later, an assistant lecturer at Sichunan University.

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In 1978 Jung Chang left for Britain where she was awarded a scholarship from York University. Seven years later in 1982 Jung Chan became the first person from the Peoples Republic of China to receive a Ph.D. in Linguistics from a British university. Jung Chang now lives London where she teaches at a school of Oriental and African Studies, at London University. The story Wild Swan it takes place in China and it covers 108 years from 1870 to 1978. The book also covers two of the most historical events that happened in China. Those events are (1).

The Manchu Empire falls, (2). It talks about the communist party and how it came to power after the civil war in 1949. After the civil war was over the communist party took over the Manchus place as rulers of China. Mao was the leader of the communist party. During the Manchu period, if a crime was committed and you were innocent it would not matter because you were automatically guilty of the crime.

During the Manchu period, the women were treated like they were slaves and the husband did not look at them as a person. The womens roles were to be housewives and have their husbands kids China always believed in what Confucius was trying to teach and also what he believed in. Confucian philosophies are based on his ideas of education and meritocracy. During this period, the caste system was widely used in this area of the world. The caste system was a system where people were born in to their level of society.

Confucius believed that through education and meritocracy, the way a person behaved, that a person should be able to earn his rank in society. Confucius also believed that if the home-life had positive values, then there would be a harmony in society. He believed that since children received their values from their parents, how they conducted themselves in society reflected their Home-life. If their homes were stable, then there would be a balance in society. As I was reading this book I thought, how sad and hard these people lived back then. With the Manchus in charge, its like the people had very harsh and limited lives. The person I felt sorry for was Jung Changs grandmother because she lived through the Manchu period and, during that period the women were treated like the only thing in life was to obey her husbands commands and have his kids.

I am glad that I live in a place where there is freedom and where we dont have to be scared everyday wondering if we are going to make it through another day.

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