Three China Hands Describe Their Formative First Visits
8:00 - 9:30am (first 15-20 minutes is for networking) Continental breakfast included Hosted by the China Business Committee
Orville Schell, Leo Goodstadt and Tom Gorman are three of the contributors to the new book My First Trip to China: Scholars, Diplomats and Journalists Reflect on their First Encounters with China , edited by Kin-ming Liu. The book is a collection of vivid personal essays by thirty renowned China experts, who have shaped Western attitudes about China for a generation. It describes their expectations about China and how they were shaped, distorted – or shattered – by actual first encounters.
At this breakfast panel, moderated by Tom Gorman, the participants will recount their own maiden journeys (Mr. Goodstadt in 1973, Mr. Schell in 1975, and Mr. Gorman in 1975), and describe how their initial experiences helped shape their subsequent careers and opinions.
The early journeys they and others made, when the Cultural Revolution was only beginning to subside and Deng Xiaoping's reforms were still years into the future, serve as a benchmark for how far China has come since. The panelists will use their own first trips, and the themes of the book, as a prism to assess how much China has – and hasn't – changed in the intervening decades. Can a society re-invent itself as completely as China has attempted to do in the past century without undergoing a wrenching identity crisis?
Of additional relevance to this period is the evolving role of Hong Kong in relation to the Mainland, with the shift of Hong Kong's business community from an anti-Communist bastion to a driving force in the interchange and trade with China.
American Club, The 49/F 48-49/F Two Exchange Square 8 Connaught Place Central, Hong Kong