Return to the Middle Kingdom by Yuan-tsung Chen
One Family, Three Revolutionaries, and the Birth of Modern China

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Synopsis

In the spirit of the classic Wild Swans comes this epic tale spanning three generations and three separate revolutions. Mixing biography and history into a single ambitious story, Yuan-Tsung Chen views China’s rebirth in modern times from the perspective of her late husband’s family. 
Ah Chen, a landless peasant, fought in the Taiping Rebellion against the Manchu court in 1850-64. But when Western powers helped crush the uprising, Chen was forced to flee to Trinidad as an indentured servant. Decades later, his son Eugene rose from poverty to become Trinidad’s first Chinese lawyer before moving to London, where he met Sun Yat-sen and became his close aide. Inspired by Sun, Eugene returned to China and led the 1911 revolution that overthrew its last dynasty.
Finally, Eugene’s son Jack—the author’s late husband—used his artistic and journalistic talents to illustrate and explain the Chinese Marxist Revolution to the outside world. When Jack (whose first language was not Chinese) was seized by the Red Guards during the Cultural Revolution, his wife Yuan-tsung was forced to serve as his translator during interrogations. Ordered to write a confession—“Go back three generations to see what crimes your family has committed against the revolution!”—Jack and Yuan-tsung began to piece together the family’s dramatic history. 
This remarkable story, spanning a turbulent century and a half, is the compelling result.
 

About Yuan-tsung Chen

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Published January 1, 2008 by Union Square Press. 464 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Travel. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Return to the Middle Kingdom

The Bookbag

Chen Guixin is called Joseph Chen and Chen Youren is Eugene Chen.

Oct 24 2009 | Read Full Review of Return to the Middle Kingdom:...

The Bookbag

Chen Guixin is called Joseph Chen and Chen Youren is Eugene Chen.

Oct 24 2009 | Read Full Review of Return to the Middle Kingdom:...

Blogger News Network

Author Yuan-Tsung Chen has taken a very unique approach, her book covers three generations of the Chen family, and this was three generations that each in their own way helped forge the country and the politics.

Aug 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Return to the Middle Kingdom:...

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