Archive for Category: "Featured – Main Slider"

Boosted Incomes, Risky Conditions In Rural Factory

Boosted Incomes, Risky Conditions In Rural Factory

For the past four years, Tong Ping Fang has worked diligently at Lin Wei Meng Tools, Ltd., a wrench factory in the rural village of Xiejiaqiao, spending up to 10 hours a day cutting steel posts into blocks. Her job is one of the first of many steps needed to create the 4 million Duralast wrenches to be distributed each year to various countries around the world, including the United States.

Village Nightlife Minus the Nightclub

Village Nightlife Minus the Nightclub

With music blaring from speakers connected to a laptop and strobe lights flashing, women lined up facing the same direction in four evenly spaced rows. Dancing in unison under the night sky, they stepped right, spun around, and put a hand out to the side. Texas-style line dancing? Not by a long shot.

Ghosts in the Chinese Machine

Ghosts in the Chinese Machine

Forty years ago, entertainment took a distant back seat to political rhetoric, as television was just one of many mediums used by the Communist Party to perpetuate ideas like “class struggle” and resistance to “Western imperialism” to galvanize generations of Chinese. Today, the Party’s line is economic improvement, a furnace of productivity that can burn through labor as fast as it does money and the environment.

Fifth-Generation Farmer’s Son Looks Outward

Fifth-Generation Farmer’s Son Looks Outward

Wang Zhongwei, a 49-year-old rice farmer from the Eastern Chinese village of Xiejiaqiao, can still remember when his family struggled to produce enough food for one meal a day. His 19-year-old-son Wang Yang, who grew up in the same village, never had to worry if he would have enough to eat. He can barely remember a time without the Internet.

Villagers Shift Away From Subsistence Farming

Villagers Shift Away From Subsistence Farming

As middle- and upper-class Americans increasingly seek out organic, local and sustainably produced foods, the prosperous villagers of Xiejiaqiao outside the Chinese city of Hangzhou are eagerly abandoning the hard labor and time commitment of subsistence farming for a market-based food system.

The Poet and the Dragon Boat Festival

The Poet and the Dragon Boat Festival

The poetry of Walt Whitman has lasted more than 150 years. The poetry of Shakespeare more than 400. Both are outdone by the Chinese poet Qu Yuan, who wrote more than 2,000 years ago and is still remembered in China where a major national holiday, the Dragon Boat Festival, is held annually in his honor.

Chinese Snatch Up Status Symbol Cars

Chinese Snatch Up Status Symbol Cars

In 21st century China, where what your drive increasingly determines your social status. The BMW 5 Series is strictly for middle management while the 7 Series models signals corporate executive. The Audi A6 is reserved for government officials and businessmen while old money sticks to the Mercedes Benz E Class.

Educating Migrant Workers’ Children

Educating Migrant Workers’ Children

A handful of schools in Beijing like Xin Xin take on the task of educating the more than 500,000 children of the 6.5 million migrant workers living in the city who cannot afford to attend public school. According to 2010 census data, one out of every three Beijing residents is a migrant worker and it is one of the fastest growing cities in China.

Gaokao Is Make or Break for Students

Gaokao Is Make or Break for Students

Taking a test that can determine your collegiate future is never easy, but at least students in the United States can take a few extra shots if they flub their first go. Not so in China, where the annual National College Entrance Exam of China is an all-or-nothing two-day assessment that can determine a students fate.

The Young and the Internet Addicted

The Young and the Internet Addicted

In a large, dimly lit room, silent all but for the sound of dozens of clacking keyboards, Gao Hai, 22, looked up from his computer screen, hesitant to momentarily leave his online game of Death of the Ancients. “I’ve been playing for 3 hours, almost 4 so far today,” he says. “I’ve played all but one day this week.”