Sunny对《Factory Girls》的笔记(4)

Factory Girls
  • 书名: Factory Girls
  • 作者: Leslie T. Chang
  • 副标题: From Village to City in a Changing China
  • 页数: 432
  • 出版社: Spiegel & Grau
  • 出版年: 2008-10-7
  • 第292页
    For me, the hardest thing about staying in Min's village was the collective way of life.  No one was ever alone.  In America, they had raised my brother and me very differently, encouraging our independence and freeing us from family obligation.  My parents had not expected us to visit relatives; they never told us what we should study in school.  And in all the years I lived abroad, my parents never once pressured me to come home.  In Min's village, I realized this for the first time, and I was grateful.
    The Chinese countryside is not relaxing. it is a place of constant socializing and negotiation, a conversation that has been going on for a long time and will continue after you are gone. Spending time in Min's village, I understood why migrants felt so alone when they first went to the city. But I also saw how they came to value the freedom they found there, until at last they were unable to live without it.
    2013-04-07 09:45:40 回应
  • 第197页
    Square and Round painted a bleak world of complicated relationships, intense workplace politics, two-faced friendships, corrupt dealings and status-conscious bosses with absolute power over one's fate.  Colleagues undermined one another in front of their superiors.  Bosses exploited their authority in order to belittle others and obtain bribes.  Cynical men got the most attractive women.  Money and status were the measure of happiness.  Honesty was never the best policy.
    I had always felt that social interactions among the Chinese were needlessly complicated. Confucian tradition, which emphasized not the individual but his role in a complex hierarchical order, placed great value on status, self-restraint, and the proper display of respect. The Chinese had been living in densely populated communities for several thousand years, and they had developed subtle skills of delivering and detecting slights, exerting power through indirect means, and manipulating situations to their own benefit, all beneath a surface of elaborate courtesy. Even Chinese themselves often complained that living in their society was lei, tiring. I had not appreciated just how tiring until I read this book, which devoted eight pages to how to smile and forty-five pages to lulling others into letting down their guard.
    2013-04-07 10:00:23 回应
  • 第382页
    Because now I understand all of them - understand why a person would choose not to tell her story, or be unable to tell it, or not admit to any feeling, because the emotion would overwhelm you otherwise.  I understand the poem my aunt Nellie wrote for her father, in which she tries to contain her emotion, to shape her personal sorrow into something proper and purposeful.  In the final verses, she fails - But I hate it! Father - and the emotion floods through, a secret wound suddenly open to the world.
    There was a lot to dislike about the migrants world of Min and Chunming: the materialism, the corruption, the coarseness of daily existence. But now there was an opportunity to leave your village and change your fate, to imagine a different life and make it real. The journey my grandfather attempted was one that millions of young people now made every day - they left home; they entered an unfamiliar land; they worked hard. But nowadays, their purpose was not to change China's fate. They were concerned with their own destinies, and they made their own decisions. If it was an ugly world, at least it was their own.
    2013-04-11 10:27:16 回应
  • 第333页
    In a world where almost everyone chose silence and forgetting, he dared to stand up and speak out.  Throughout Chinese history, there had been such people - private historians, writing their own accounts of events when the official version fell short.  
    But his effort had not led to clarity - instead, it had twisted his mind beyond rescue.
    2013-04-12 09:30:07 回应

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