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Blood Letters tells the astonishing story of Lin Zhao, a Chinese poet and journalist arrested by the authorities in 1960 and executed eight years later, at the height of the Cultural Revolution. The only Chinese citizen known to have openly and steadfastly opposed communism under Mao, she rooted her dissent in her Christian faith, and expressed it by writing in her own blood, at times on her clothes and on cloth torn from her bedsheets.
The historian Lian Xi has written the first authoritative, documented biography of Lin Zhao to appear in any language. It chronicles her torturous personal journey from her successive conversions to Christianity and communism to her bitter disillusionment with the revolution following the Anti-Rightist purges of 1957. Turning to poetry as a weapon, she castigated Mao as a villainous tyrant, and was soon arrested, subjected to repeated torture, and finally silenced.
Miraculously, Lin Zhao’s prison writings survived. Drawing on these works and others from the years before her arrest, as well as interviews with her friends, classmates, and other former political prisoners, Blood Letters paints an indelible portrait of courage and faith in the face of unrelenting evil. In the words of Liu Xiaobo, the late Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Lin Zhao is “the only voice of freedom left for contemporary China.”
|Title: Blood Letters: The Untold Story of Lin Zhao, a Martyr in Mao's China|
By: Lian Xi
Number of Pages: 352
Vendor: Basic Books
Publication Date: 2018
|Dimensions: 9.25 X 6.00 (inches)|
Weight: 1 pound 4 ounces
Stock No: WW644236
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"Blood Letters, carefully researched and timely, reveals the trajectory of a privileged girl who went from Christian to communist comrade to a Christian resister whose crime was being an 'impenitent counterrevolutionary.' Even told poorly, this would be a remarkable story. Xi tells it in memorable fashion."Christian Century
"China's achievements and failures are usually celebrated or condemned on the mass scale. The vivid individuality of the men and women who have fought bravely to change their nation can fade from view. Blood Letters is the most powerful antidote to that amnesia. Lin Zhao's story, nearly erased or forgotten, will live as an example of civic and personal courage to inspire people in her country and elsewhere."James Fallows, Atlantic
"Blood Letters is a genuinely exciting book. Lian Xi sheds a whole new light on an extraordinarily important Christian figure (and martyr) who has hitherto been utterly unknown outside a narrow band of specialists.... A masterpiece."Philip Jenkins, author of Crucible of Faith: The Ancient Revolution That Made Our Modern Religious World
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