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Cambridge PEN present Lijia Zhang on China today
Friday 15 February, 6:00 pm—7:00 pm
The best-selling author Lijia Zhang, whose first book was banned in China, is visiting Cambridge PEN to talk about her novel Lotus, feminism, freedom of expression and the unique experiences of women over the last six decades of extraordinary change in China.
Zhang was born in Nanjing and had ambitions to write from an early age. However, aged sixteen she was made to work as a ‘Rocket Factory Girl’ in a munitions factory and was unable to finish her schooling. During the decade working at the factory, despite the discouragement of those around her, Zhang taught herself English.
In 2003, Zhang was accepted to study creative writing at Goldsmiths. She is now a writer, freelance journalist and social commentator, based mainly in Beijing. She writes in English in part to avoid censorship and to bring untold stories of Chinese women to a wider audience.
Lotus tells the story of female migrants who become sex workers in China’s ‘City of Sins’. The book follows a young woman torn between past traditions and modern desires. Join us from 6pm – 7pm in the Lightfoot Room of the Old Divinity School, St. John’s College to hear some of the stories and politics of China over the last century.