Fortunate Sons

Fortunate Sons

The 120 Chinese Boys Who Came to America, Went to School, and Revolutionized An Ancient Civilization

Book - 2011
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At the twilight of the nineteenth century, China sent a detachment of boys to America in order to learn the ways of the West, modernize the antiquated empire, and defend it from foreigners invading its shores. After spending a decade in New England's finest schools, the boys re-turned home, driven by a pioneering spirit of progress and reform. Their lives in America influenced not only their thinking but also their nation's endeavor to become a contemporary world power, an endeavor that resonates powerfully today.Drawing on diaries, letters, and other first-person accounts, Fortunate Sons tells a remarkable tale, weaving together the dramas of personal lives with the momentous thrust of a nation reborn. Shedding light on a crucial yet largely unknown period in China's history, Fortunate Sons provides insight into the issues concerning that nation today, from its struggle toward economic supremacy to its fraught relationship with the United States.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton, c2011
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780393070040
Branch Call Number: 951.035 LEI 2011 22
Characteristics: 319 p. : ill
Additional Contributors: Miller, Matthew I.


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Jul 21, 2015

Interesting account of Chinese history in the late 1800's, as they fell behind the industrialized nations. There was an organized attempt to send the best and brightest (boys, of course) to America for an education that they could bring back to China. The deep religious and political strongholds of the Orient proved to be the critical obstacle in industrial advancement.

I am not a history buff, but you can teach me something if you tell it right. This book reads pretty easily, and personalizes the stories of the young boys who land in New England.
I admit, I found it difficult to keep all of the similar Chinese names straight.

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