Friday, March 12, 2010

A Chinese patriot, heading for European parliament - Zhang Lijia

Lijia-indiaZhang Lijia by Fantake via Flickr
Author Zhang Lijia of the bestseller "Socialism Is Great!": A Worker's Memoir of the New China might be building fame fast outside China, but her interview with the Global Times is a breakthrough. While no political activist, she is also not always toeing the official bureaucracy. But at least in the English-language media, times are slightly changing.
"As you know my view is not always in line with the government, though I regard myself as patriotic," she says, even before the interview.
Despite the odd actions of the powers that be, Zhang is no political activist, and her book is no Cultural Revolution related diatribe like many Chinese authors before. Instead she tells the tale of a young woman growing up and working in the Liming factory in Nanjing, one of China's furnace cities, making intercontinental missiles that could reach America.
Her plans for the future are no less remarkable. As Zhang Lijia holds a British passport, she can enter European politics. In the Global Times:
"I've had a great time in China, It's very vibrant and interesting, and I definitely don't have plans to move. One possibility is that I'd like to try and become a Member of the European Parliament. I just think that it's disgraceful that there are no members that are Chinese, they have them from India and everywhere and China has become too powerful to be ignored. They have to understand how to deal with China.
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Zhang Lijia is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need her at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch.
Zhang Lijia also contributed to our book A Changing China.
 



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