Criticising China

Prospect Magazine

Criticising China

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The response to my farewell

For the August issue of Prospect I wrote an article entitled, “You’ll never be Chinese”. I expressed thoughts and ideas I have held for some time, backed up by observations and personal experiences from 16 years in China. It was not easy to write. Much of it was negative. I was keenly aware that I might upset my friends and family in China. I had also naively expected the words to come flooding out, rather like a sigh of relief. I found myself choking on them. It’s hard to say goodbye.

The article is proving a challenge to live with as well. Thanks to it being freely available online, the readership has been far greater than expected. It was published as I left the UK, where I had been doing a recce for our move, and flew back to China. The first person to comment was at the baggage carousel in Pudong Airport. For approximately one week, I heard from foreign friends and acquaintances in China. The consensus was: “Good points, we all agree, but we can’t say so because we have interests to protect.” Those who had already left China were less inhibited. I watched as the comments piled up on the Prospect website. It was good to see old friends, and enemies, put in their five cents. It was more of a challenge to spot the notorious “fifty cent” gang, the commentators encouraged by the authorities to help with “soft power projection.” They can be subtle.

At the end of that week the article was translated into Chinese and appeared on various discussion boards and the Chinese version of Twitter and Facebook, Weibo. It went from a readership of tens of thousands to hundreds of them, potentially millions. The effect was immediate. I happened to be away from home travelling again. That was fortuitous.

My wife was called into the police station, not as we both feared, for a dressing down, but so the police chief could pass on, from the local, county, and provincial governments, all of which had called him in person, their concern that I might have felt hard done by. “Was everything all right?” he asked.

My wife also had to face her business partner, who has become a close friend. He is of the older generation, and did not like what I had written. He took it personally. If I had been present I fear we would have argued, but while I was away the People’s Daily published an op-ed piece on how not to get upset when foreigners comment on China in negative ways. On my return my friend greeted me warmly and looks forward to a long chat.

The younger generation of Chinese, from the mid-twenties to mid-forties, on the whole seem to approve. I have received personal messages that make the torment of writing, and the doubts I have felt since, easier to bear. The one I shall frame came via a distinguished foreign correspondent who writes brilliantly and perceptively about China. It was sent to him by someone he describes as a one of the best young journalists in China: “I have read an article written by a foreigner who had lived in China for 36 [sic] years and now decided to leave China to UK. His observation about China is very accurate, meanwhile he is also very pessimistic about the next ten years. After I read this, I just cannot restrain myself from crying. I think this article will help you to understand China much better.”

Will there be longer term consequences or repercussions? When I ran my magazines in China, I wrote a review of a book about Xinjiang, the Muslim semi-autonomous region in the country’s north west. Like Tibet, it is a sensitive subject, and my government publishing partners, the “content inspectors,” refused to let me publish it. Two years later those same partners seized control of my magazine business and drove me out with less than no compensation. I rescued a small travel magazine and tried to start again, but I needed a new government partner. Everyone I approached was told by a very senior government official that to co-operate with me would have dire consequences.

We are not leaving immediately. In fact we do not have to be in the UK until the academic year of 2013 starts. And my wife intends to keep her small business going for as long as possible on the mountain. I hope that’ll be for years to come. We’d all like to return here on a regular basis. But you never know when “they” might use “something” against you.

  1. September 23, 2012

    justabludger

    i always enjoy reading articles about China written by ’ foreigners ’ who have been living in China for a long time, more objective and have different perspectives. as a chinese myself who have also been living overseas for a long time i would like to say that i do agree with most of the rings you said. that kind of education we received at school in our early years make us less interested or have cold feet when given chance to criticize our faceless leader,some even blame ‘Confucius ’ which is deemed to be the core value of Chinese. personally, i still try to avoid any political confrontations even after receiving educations and watching election process, protests against government, and face to face debates with their leaders. i might be more open to these activities, and love watching, but yet nowhere close to participating. i hope this would change in the near future, but like the title of your last article ‘you will never be a Chinese’

    • September 28, 2012

      John

      me too, after growing up in China, then being in the US for 16 years, I found myself more of a man of the world than a Chinese man, I dislike certain things in China and Chinese history, culture and secular thoughts among the majority of common people.(of course I dislike a lot of things in US side too, so you love China to real death people can stop accusing me being traitor.

      I found it hard and challenging to think like this, but I would never go back to be idiot, although I can not say I have reached the state of perfectness, at least I am in motion to get away from stupidness, which is a good state to be in for the rest of my life.

  2. September 23, 2012

    justabludger

    i will never be a ‘foreigner’.

  3. September 23, 2012

    pangguanzhe

    Thank you for giving a follow-up on this; “You’ll never be Chinese” was highly insightful, and it’s good to know it’s made its rounds. Having only been in and out of China for five years myself, I had less experience to draw on when reading the piece, so I asked one of the most intelligent and well-spoken Chinese scholars I know for his opinion on your article. “????”, he said. Whether or not I fully agree with every point of an article like this, I deeply appreciate the perspective of foreigners who have lived here many years: Hearing from people who have watched the country’s fortunes rise and fall over a longer period is valuable to relatively new arrivals like myself as we develop our own perspectives of this amazing, tragic country. Thanks for speaking up.

  4. September 23, 2012

    pangguanzhe

    The Chinese characters apparently didn’t show up. “Yi zhen jian xue” is what my scholar friend said.

  5. September 23, 2012

    Seppo

    Perhaps someone here would be interested to discuss these issues at a more fundamental level? From my point of view:

    The network of relationships that we rely on to survive in daily life is differenet in different cultures. This social fabric in China looks something like this:

    - An individual needs to rely on all possible relationships (kinship, business, friendship,…) to survive and in turn to fulfill their own obligations.

    - Obligations, within this social network, need not be settled immediately, but instead built-up and discharged over long periods of time, requiring strong mutual assurance and trust.

    - The competition with others (those deemed outside the network) is merciless. Such transactions carry little or no “moral” obligation.

    The above makes it extremely difficult for institutions (including the nation state) to exist and function in the manner expected by us foreigners. At the individual level life is bitter-sweet and one must dedicate oneself to building a strong network, being always alert and prepared to lose.

    In my experience foreigners in China are subject to more positive than negative discrimination, although recently this balance seems to be shifting in the negative direction.

  6. September 25, 2012

    Jen

    Mark, I am so glad to hear that you and your lovely family (including the dog) are not leaving immediately!
    The response to the original essay ‘You’ll never be Chinese’ has been fascinating, especially the ongoing posts between Sifan and A Chinese Living Aboard (sic). In many ways, I feel as though I have learnt more about China through reading the many threads here, than from any of the bumf I was sent before coming out to Shanghai 14 months ago, as that most attractive personage, a ‘trailing spouse’.
    I’ve tried this ex-pat life before, as a teenager in South Africa (6 years), in Northern Nigeria (5 years) during my 20s and I’m now at an age where, frankly, I should know better! I guess, from reading your posts, we’ve missed the ‘best’ of Shanghai, but I am trying to make the best of what is still here for the next three years.
    I hope the rest of your time on the ‘Shan (as you put it in our book that you so kindly signed and left at Naked Stables a month back) is a happy one, and that you leave with a sweeter taste in the mouth than anticipated!
    If we get back to the mountain before you leave, we will call in and thank you properly…and buy you a well-deserved drink!
    Stay well and warm up there xx

  7. September 26, 2012

    wplovehoney

    “It was more of a challenge to spot the notorious “fifty cent” gang, the commentators encouraged by the authorities to help with “soft power projection.” They can be subtle.”

    Kitto enjoyed all the encouraging comments while conveniently labeling all negative ones as from “fifty cent” gang. How intellectual!

    • October 2, 2012

      Crusader75

      Thanks for that, fifty cent gang member.

      • October 4, 2012

        wplovehoney

        Same logic as Kitto; you two can be a couple.

  8. September 26, 2012

    Fran

    Actually, Kitto did not place all negative comments on his article in the category of fifty-centers (whose existence as trained an paid party-state employees, internet commentators, has been amply documented), as “wplovehoney” alleged. Kitto pointed out that his personal enemies also put in their “five cents”–these were not the fifty-cent gang members.

    • September 26, 2012

      wplovehoney

      OK! So all negative comments are either from fifty-cent gang or personal enemies; how intellectual!

      Are you happy now?

  9. September 26, 2012

    Ina Erasmus

    I just read your article and came across the sentence: “It was more of a challenge to spot the notorious “fifty cent” gang, the commentators encouraged by the authorities to help with “soft power projection.” and I did not quite understand what you meant by it. Could you please clarify “fifty cent gang” and “soft power projection”? Very much appreciated, I.S.

  10. September 26, 2012

    Ina Erasmus

    I’m sorry to bother you again, but I had difficulties to understand further terminology: could you please clarify “dressing down” and which “People’s daily” is meant? Is it a Chinese newspaper? Thank you, I.S.

  11. September 27, 2012

    Kastus

    As what I found out Mark has never tried to be Chinese. He hoped that China will become country which Mark likes. So in this case he can be Chinese in his China.
    But China stayed another country what he imagined and is developing in own way.
    Actually the most points of his issue are not personal, just general. Like Weibo, govmt and etc. It’s quite strange. Because there isn’t something new. Looks like compilation from western magazines with some commentaries.
    But is it really important? I know many people in Europe, the USA who really disappointed with their governments, policies, hypocrisy.
    But what they really care their personal problem.
    Relationships with mother and family of your wife, cultural distance, different hobbies and preferences. I found out nothing about it
    Why do you really decide to leave?

    • June 15, 2013

      ?????

      Kastus’s post reads like a fifty center post, in case anyone was curious.

      Keeping working on your English, friend. Maybe someday you can write for the English edition of the Global Times.

  12. September 29, 2012

    Anna

    I came across both articles by chance and enjoyed reading them. My knowledge of China is limited to a few days in Hong Kong as a tourist. What strikes me is that there are elements in the UK that are not dissimilar to the situation described in China, such as difficulty knowing where to inverts, a property bubble with young people unable to buy, or increasingly even rent, corruption (Libor rates, the Sun, the Police – Hillsborough, MP’s expenses), authorities unwilling to make unpopular decision, problems with the health service and state education, elite schools and universities for the upper classes. Think of the Falklands as our rocky islands that need to be defended from the Argentinians, not the Japanese. Nationalism being used against Europe and the Royal family, TV programmes (X Factor?) and foreign wars used in part to distract the masses. I still think the UK has much to offer and i am not thinking of moving to China. In Europe we are already having our economic crisis that you anticipate for China. I just think that when you return to the UK, there may be something all too familiar waiting for you. You may want to consider Australia, USA, Scandinavia for better run economies and societies.

  13. October 1, 2012

    Jack

    all the mistakes the author have made was to start a publishing business instead of continuing his trade business. I am not saying that he can’t publish a magazine in China. Actually, it would work very well if he could publish magazines like People etc for entertainment purpose. Never try to bring any serious topics related to any politics- -sensitive materials. Xinjiang? Are you kidding me? You are trying to kill yourself by digging yourself a grave. Xinjiang itself is a censored word, just like thousands of other ordinary words —–the author should have known that.

  14. October 3, 2012

    L.F.

    I was born and brought up in Xinjiang, under strict Communist rule. I never knew what an abandoned world it was and still is until I left China 8 years ago. Thanks to people like Mark, who dared to question and comment on Xinjiang, this place hasn’t been completely forgotten by the rest of the world.

  15. October 6, 2012

    erwin bergkmut

    dear Mark,

    thanks for sharing your insights. its always good to hear that one’s own thoughts are not singular or unsocial. living in shanghai we can surely understand the tuition issue which will strike us only a year later than your family, in fall 2014.

    I happen to read Adeline Yen Mah’s book A Thousand Pieces of Gold, in which she retells China’s history by explaining important proverbs taken from Sima Qian’s Shiji and reflects on very personal situations of her own life. She says that only few autobiographies are written in China, because of the concept of face, which is traced back to the proverb Hong Men Yan (the banquet at the Wild Goose Gate).

    Upon reading your follow up article, I have to draw the analogy between your first article and Hong Men Yan. From a European perspective, you did the right thing, from a Chinese perspective, the entire nation, the Guojia, lost face. I guess, you are lucky to have received so much positive feedback. I hope it stays that way. Good luck!

  16. October 15, 2012

    Roy

    Hi Mark,

    Great article “Why I’m Leaving China”, I can share the same feelings as you, I concur with everything you said. I also left China because I did not feel that it held any future for someone who is interested in a balanced education for their kids and critical thinking. The main problem with the CCP’s version of China is that it cannot problematise “Chinesesness”, that was also what I read from Mark’s original article. There are many ways of being Chinese but sadly the system in place on the mainland has not yet evolved to encompass many identities and states of being Chinese including adopting the democratic system in Taiwan and freedom of speech in Hong Kong. My God if the quasi-fascist KMT eventually had to reform and embrace democracy then the CCP can do it too. Even Hong Kong has a long way to go in terms of respect for diversity of opinion and ethnicity but if the CCP has intelligent reformers in the party, they will harness the benefits that Hong Kong, Taiwan and international pluralism can bring to China. In time, Chinese youth will know more of the true reformers of Hu Yaobang and Zhao Ziyang and a little less of Deng and Mao. I taught in China but despite the difficulties of teaching in a restrictive political environment, I have great faith in the youth to overcome the narrow nationalism and xenophobia currently trending in social life there.

    Can I also say to Mark’s detractors that when someone criticises a place it’s because one holds great love and respect for a place. Criticism is a form of love, sadly something that certain governments and individuals are not able to understand. It is because we care that we criticise. The worst thing is indifference, as Mark says correctly in his article, lack of empathy is the most dangerous thing because people without empathy cannot criticise, cannot love or relate to others and ultimately do not care about others. Mark obviously loves China deeply and it is China’s loss that he is leaving.
    China has a long path to tread in order to realise that it is part and parcel of humanity, whatever the colour of skin or supposed length of someone’s civilisation. Nazism has taught us that any talk of a super-race or unique people is fallacy. In fact, we are all Africans, all human (something else that Chinese state education still has to acknowledge in it’s textbooks).

    Mark was simply expressing a frustration that many people express worldwide when their humanity is not acknowledged and when someone is not able to be accepted in a society. For many Chinese in China, they are also still not accepted because of their political or religious beliefs.

    We all get frustrated at times and it is easy to rant. Sometimes a rant is warranted as in Mark’s case, especially when someone has invested emotion and time in a country.

    Well done Mark, continue to do your own thing and do the right thing!

    • October 20, 2012

      erwin bergkmut

      well written. fully agreed.

    • January 20, 2013

      wych

      Well said.

    • December 11, 2013

      Uh huh

      So when we criticize Lindsay Lohan and Brittany Spears, it’s because we love them and feel empathy for them?

  17. October 18, 2012

    Traveller

    I dont get it … I ve been living here for 14 and regularly come for 24 years but I never intended nor expected to become a Chinese in whatever sense. I dont think I ve ever heard of an american becoming an pakistani, vietnamese, korean or a german or french for that matter ….. seems all very abstract and constructed. I followed Marks start with That´s and was always puzzled by the Yangzhou publisher, it didnt seem logical when selling in Shanghai, but I said to myself, well, he ll be knowing what he´s doing. And I ve followed others, some hv left, some are still here, some are successful, some not. Blaming it on China would never come to my mind …

  18. October 24, 2012

    K. Stone

    (This is a reprint of my comments in LinkeIn)

    I fully understand the frustration foreigners feel about China. I am a foreigners who studied China for 35 years, acquired a solid knowledge of the language and culture. I taught Chinese and actively helped companies to decipher the Chinese legal/business jargon. I found that the English and the Chinese versions were different. I found that what they said to foreigners and what they talked among themselves were quite different. Dishonesty was way of life. Once the Chinese realized the extent of my knowledge of the language (read fluently), the CHinese refused to work with me. Years ago I worked on an article with a Chinese professor, once the censor found out, she was severely criticized and told to cut off contact with me. I have not heard from her since. I was not allowed to give a prepared speech in CHinese, I had to do it in English, knowing fully well that the audience would not understand it. THe Chinese were adamant that I only speak English. I did, changed the topic and nobody noticed or cared. I am sure they did not understand my presentation. That was the last time that I was in China and have no intention of going there again.
    I wrote a book comparing the two oldest cultures – Judaism and CHina, (The Covenant and the Mandate of Heaven) but the Chinese banned the book in China. I dared to write about the taboo subject-the Cultural Revolution, which I called a home made Chinee holocaust. The Chinese did not like it.
    I came to realize that China has no interest to cooperate with or learn honestly about the West. They publish books and articles that shows their misguided perception of the West. They rewrote the entire Chinese classics in simplified characters, in the process they changed history and their cultural tradition. And when someone brings this issue up, the answer is “So what?”

  19. November 9, 2012

    Fred

    The above comment is very interesting, and Roy’s. The very first one about how Chinese education system has gradually eroded ite citizens inclination to participate in politics. Almost like a knee-jerk refex, and yet mentally, the commentator cannot even come to terms with his own disinclination, since he has a marked distaste for Chinese polity.

  20. November 15, 2012

    Lucy Metcalfe

    On a purely encouraging, unpolitical / non-geographically specific note, you must already be aware of this, but a little appreciation never goes amiss:

    I remember very clearly the week when That’s no longer appeared, and all that was available in its stead was bitty, uninformative, unattractive content on poor quality paper. It was a downright shame.

    In all sincerity, your product oustripped publications of a similar ilk, even in English-speaking cities of the world. I would be delighted to one day happen upon a bouncy, matte cover with its distinctive font in my local venues, as no doubt would many, many others.

    Whatever your outcome, from one SOAS East Asia department issue to another, life post China-exile can hold pleasant surprises… ???? notwithstanding.

  21. November 15, 2012

    Lucy Metcalfe

    ???? = renquloukong

  22. November 25, 2012

    Alan

    I have “only” been in China for 4 years but during that time I have become married to a Han Chinese. Sometimes I love this place and sometimes I want to rave and rant about it. My field is business teaching (no not English but I have been drafted several times).

    Incidentally I have found that many Chinese would like to leave China and make it to the west at very least for a Western education. As Lenin said they would like to “vote with their feet”.

    This poem is the result of a bad China day: taxis that won’t stop, buses that are so full you can’t get on and trying to exercise a leg broken 5 months before when a crazy e-bike rider hit our e-bike side on..

    Have a laugh but yes, you’ll never really be Chinese even when you marry one. Come to Australia and eventually you or your children will be accepted Australians.

    PS waigouren and laowai are the common terms used to describe us. They both mean “foreigners”. In Australia we call Chinese “Chinese” not foreigners.

    Hey, hey don’t call me laowai
    Why, why you call me waiguoren?
    I’m Alan not an Alien
    Like you I’m the same same
    I too have an illustrious family name
    I’m not a pale ghost or an old whitey
    I’m not a foreign devil, thank God almighty
    I’m just an adventurous traveller
    A roaming fellow earth dweller
    Hey, hey don’t call me laowai
    Why, why you call me waiguoren?

    Don’t try to fool me with loaded dice
    And don’t charge me foreigner price
    Maybe a big nose but give me a full face
    I’m part of the human race
    There’s a world outside the middle kingdom
    The open door, that’s the way of wisdom
    Hey, hey don’t call me laowai
    Why, why you call me waiguoren?

    • December 10, 2012

      imadethe1stcomment

      hey. as a chinese who has been living in Australia for 7 years and still in my early 20s, i have something interesting to share. you know wot, even in Australia, most of the Chinese here still call non-Asian looking people ‘waiguoren’ or ‘guilao (in cantonese)’. I would kindly remind them, that ‘Aussies are not waiguoren here in Australia, people like you who do not hold Australian citizenship are’. Generally speaking, in Mainland China, local people address pointy nose, blue eyes, blonde hair looking (particularly) ‘waiguoren’ (foreigners), and in Hongkong, they address them – ‘guilao’(non-asian probably, not 100% sure). In China, people do not identify you based on your nationality , but on your LOOK. the reason why local chinese call you guys ‘waiguoren’ is simple, because you LOOK different. China might have changed significantly in the last three decades, but compared to countries like US, Australia, etc that immigrates compose relatively big percentage of the total population, other races (ethnicity)are still small in China. Cant find a better way to explain this, thats all I have at the moment.

  23. December 26, 2012

    NA Preston

    Just stumbled on this follow up article which intrigues me, why come to a country, blast it in a magazine that in fairness Mark must have know would get huge circulation he should, he was in publishing – then stay longer? I also live and work in China, I have a Chinese wife and my daughter is at school here but cannot agree with many of Marks comments, in fact I feel in some ways the opposite and am glad to have the Chinese education system available. My daughter is not naturally gifted but she is currently way ahead of my brothers kids who are both older and in the UK system. Her education is intense but her results are dramatic and amazingly she still has personality and an ability to mix with people from all over the world and age group. Please don’t condemn a system that in its own way works and creates results just because it is not for your liking.

    The other points Mark made I do feel were at times very self-indulgent with little concern for the way others think and certainly with total disregard for any bad feeling that it created for those of us who do live here and wish to remain. As an expat I choose to live in China and also can choose to leave, I was not invited to come here but did so by choice and as such accept the country for what it is, good and bad. There are many bad things here, just as there are in the UK and USA and as a reader of the BBC news site I see much negativity there so Mark, please be careful, the grass is not always any greener on the other side of the fence.

    This is my 5p worth, maybe not as much value as a 50c comment but no-doubt will be tagged as such give my desire to support the Chinese system as opposed to jump on the China bashing bandwagon that so many around the world choose to climb on……..! I also feel I can speak with some level of authority, I live here, I have my family and business here, I have had the pleasure of visiting Moganshan and Marks lodge and whilst I understand many of his points feel after a dose of the UK may regret both his decission and choice of words, judging by the follow up article the latter may aleady be the case.

    Good luck Mark in where ever you chose to live.

    • January 28, 2013

      Octar

      I don’t think there’s any reason to discredit you as a 50cer. Youy discredit yourself effectively enough by labeling Mark self-indulgent for simply stating things as he sees them. To imply that he should have censored his thought because of “bad feeling that it created for those of us who do live here and wish to remain” shows only too well your cravenness.

  24. January 2, 2013

    kaizokuo

    I really wish that someone or the USA can set us free from the evil living in the earth. They one day will control your world! Be careful for the evil. Let us tell them to get out of our earth!

  25. April 4, 2013

    Lawrence

    Bravo Mark,
    Continue to fight the good fight, a concept that for sure is lost on China’s leaders.
    IMHO China’s government brings shame on what it means to truly be Chinese.
    My hopes and prayers go out to the people of China.

  26. June 15, 2013

    TerryO

    Been working with China (inside and outside) since 1980 — long enough to agree with and disagree with just about everything written above. Guess I’m becoming Chinese though as ‘imadethe1stcomment’ notes, I will always be a waiguoren.

  27. June 17, 2013

    Gene Richards

    Whoa, is somebody pissed off…and can I feel that anger and frustration. And completely understood – as they say, ‘Been there, done that,’ – about 10 years overall in Chengdu, Sichuan, 6 years teaching this last time, mostly at a small, private college in the ‘burbs. BUUUUUT, wait, writing for an internationally published magazine/Website requires a tiny bit of balance.

    Reading this and the original article I was mostly on the sidelines, yelling, ‘Yeah, kick him, beat him…!’ Also, I’ve read James Fallows regularly, and other expats, and ex-expats, for a long time and have to say that maybe I was lucky (now back in the warm embrace of my native culture – California), because I was a teacher, and I lived with and among Chinese, and was always in the college office at my desk so students could chat with me if they wished. And had many projects with the students and often ate or hung out with them and…got…to…know…them. And anyone who lives in China for a while gets to hear things from their friends that they won’t even tell their Chinese friends. Some truly special moments in my life.

    But balance is needed, as in that the gubmint and bureaucracy and regulations are totally fooked, but the people are…what can I say…special. I’ve always felt that the Chinese carry a bigger heart in their chests than we Westerners. I know that isn’t very helpful, but I can’t explain it any other way – more concerned with feelings, especially family and a close circle of friends. And the common Chinese must put up with much more than we do over there, or a helluva lot more than anyone would in this country, all of which Kitto mentions – from adulterated food to bad air and water to a dicey outlook for the future.

    Even though I’m home now, I keep in touch with many of my former students and friends over there, a couple of whom I’ve known for 27 years (I started going in 1986). What a treasure was finding out about China. Frustrating as hell…but what a rich experience.

    My conclusion – Kitto is royally pissed off, and doesn’t he have a right to be, and I’m glad he vocalized his anger. And, basically agreeing with him, you can never go to China thinking you will ever ‘fit in.’ Not going to happen. But for an eye-opening experience, you might give it a try. And immerse yourself in the people and try (all you can do) to understand the culture.

    That’s one man’s opinion.

  28. January 7, 2014

    Richard

    One question to Mark Kitto. Do you think your wife and children will ever be accepted as English? If you can answer this question then you will know why you cannot be Chinese.
    While living in China, you are biting the hands that feed you and you expect the system to laud you and praise you?

  29. April 11, 2014

    Ernest

    I am not surprise at all.

    Yes, this is a choice you are making in your life. I wish you and your family all the best in the future.

    I am hoping China “will” change soon – to the better (not in the sense of being rich and powerful, more of being more “hunman” – to understand value in each and every human being in this world and in China)…but i am not keeping my fingures crossed as yet.

    I am not asking every place, every country to be a fair and judge society… but this is the value we should be asking for and expect it to be improved – if you love the place (calling it home).

    Well, this is my 2 cents in this discussion.

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Mark Kitto

Mark Kitto
Mark Kitto lived in China for 18 years. In our August 2012 issue he told Prospect why he left. He is the author of "China Cuckoo" 


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