The western society wants to know about modern China, this fast rising power from the East – How did it become what it is now? What happened to those ordinary Chinese people living in those momentous times of the past century in China? Lack of understanding could bring many hindrances during cross-cultural communication and international collaborations. As a cross-cultural consultant, I experienced this acutely in every cross-cultural project in the past and present. Only when both sides understand each other, respect and true friendship can grow between cultures and the world will benefit from that with win-win solutions or breakthroughs. I saw those who showed appreciation and in-depth knowledge of China often doing so much better and achieving so much more in their collaborative projects.
So, I thought, yes, there was the epic tale of Wild Swans, so beautifully and powerfully written but, if the world needs more and are keen to get some chronological updates about China’s more recent era after the late 1970s that Wild Swans mostly stopped at, then let’s produce another. I hope that this book will bring another insight into this mesmerizing and rapidly evolving world called modern China.
Another motivation is my mother Rong who passed away in January this year and the battles that she fought in her life. From the most condemned social class at the bottom of the society in the 1950s, Rong, through her own effort, regained her deprived dignity, rose to the top of her profession, became a leading mentor in her education community, singlehandedly brought her family out of poverty and provided a better future for her daughters. Her story excited me and compelled me to tell and share – that women can be forged into brilliant leaders such as my mother. More importantly, the society’s ultimate readiness for women in power relies on women’s own belief, determination, fortitude and innovation.