The Woman Who Could Not Forget by Ying-Ying Chang
Iris Chang Before and Beyond the Rape of Nanking- A Memoir

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Iris's sudden death was the catalyst for "The Woman Who Could Not Forget," a biographical memoir written by her mother...Her mother devotes only a few chapters to this period of illness and despair. Perhaps that's best. "The Woman Who Could Not Forget" ultimately isn't a sad story, but rather a celebration of Iris's remarkable life.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

A moving, illuminating memoir about the life of world-famous author and historian, Iris Chang, as told by her mother.
Iris Chang's best-selling book The Rape of Nanking forever changed the way we view the Second World War in Asia. It all began with a photo of a river choked with the bodies of hundreds of Chinese civilians that shook Iris to her core. Who were these people? Why had this happened and how could their story have been lost to history? She could not shake that image from her head. She could not forget what she had seen.

A few short years later, Chang revealed this "second Holocaust" to the world. The Japanese atrocities against the people of Nanking were so extreme that a Nazi party leader based in China actually petitioned Hitler to ask the Japanese government to stop the massacre. But who was this woman that single-handedly swept away years of silence, secrecy and shame?

Her mother, Ying-Ying, provides an enlightened and nuanced look at her daughter, from Iris' home-made childhood newspaper, to her early years as a journalist and later, as a promising young historian, her struggles with her son's autism and her tragic suicide. The Woman Who Could Not Forget cements Iris' legacy as one of the most extraordinary minds of her generation and reveals the depth and beauty of the bond between a mother and daughter.

The Woman Who Could Not Forget
won 2012 Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA) Awards for Literature in Adult Non-Fiction category.
 

About Ying-Ying Chang

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Ying-Ying Chang is the mother of Iris Chang. She has a PhD from Harvard in biochemistry and was a research associate professor of microbiology at University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign with her husband, Shau-Jin, a physics professor. She lives in San Jose, California and is on the board of the Iris Change Memorial Fund. Richard Rhodes is the author or editor of twenty-three books including The Making of the Atomic Bomb, which won a Pulitzer Prize, a National Book Award, and a National Book Critics Circle Award; and Dark Sun: The Making of the Hydrogen Bomb, which was shortlisted for a Pulitzer Prize. He lives in San Francisco.
 
Published May 15, 2011 by Pegasus. 400 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Travel. Non-fiction
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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Mary Kissel on May 25 2011

Iris's sudden death was the catalyst for "The Woman Who Could Not Forget," a biographical memoir written by her mother...Her mother devotes only a few chapters to this period of illness and despair. Perhaps that's best. "The Woman Who Could Not Forget" ultimately isn't a sad story, but rather a celebration of Iris's remarkable life.

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