Cover image for Blood letters : the untold story of Lin Zhao, a martyr in Mao's China / Lian Xi.
Title:
Blood letters : the untold story of Lin Zhao, a martyr in Mao's China / Lian Xi.
Author:
Title Variants:
Untold story of Lin Zhao, a martyr in Mao's China
ISBN:
9781541644236
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Basic Books, 2018.

©2018
Physical Description:
vii, 331 pages : illustrations, portraits ; 25 cm
Abstract:
"Blood Letters tells the astonishing tale of Lin Zhao, a 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 in long, prophetic writings done in her own blood, and at times on her clothes and on cloth torn from her bedsheets."--Page [2] of cover.
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Summary

Summary

The staggering story of the most influential Chinese political dissident of the Mao era, a devout Christian who was imprisoned, tortured, and executed by the regime

Blood Letters tells the astonishing tale of Lin Zhao, a Chinese poet and journalist arrested by the regime in 1960 and executed eight years later, at the height of the Cultural Revolution. Alone among the victims of Mao's dictatorship, she maintained a stubborn and open opposition during the years she was imprisoned. She rooted her dissent in her Christian faith--and expressed it in long, prophetic writings done in her own blood, and at times on her clothes and on cloth torn from her bedsheets.

Miraculously, Lin Zhao's prison writings survived, though they have only recently come to light. Drawing on these works and others from the years before her arrest, as well as interviews with friends, family, and classmates, Lian Xi paints an indelible portrait of courage and faith in the face of unrelenting evil.


Author Notes

Lian Xi is a professor of world Christianity at Duke Divinity School. The author Redeemed by Fire and The Conversion of Missionaries , he lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

The daughter of a banker and Communist activist, Peng Lingzhao (1932-68) went to an elite Christian mission school near Shanghai in the midst of China's decades-long civil war between the Nationalists, led by Chiang Kai-shek, and the insurgent Communists, led by Mao -Zedong. She grew increasingly enchanted with communist ideology and in 1949 secretly joined the Chinese Community Party at 16, adopting the name Lin Zhao. Lian Xi (Redeemed by Fire: The Rise of Popular Christianity in Modern China) describes Zhao's fevered idealism; attending a Communist-sponsored school where students were trained to be "fomenters of the revolution" that had begun in earnest with Mao's collectivist land reforms and mass killings. But when Zhao soured on Mao's totalitarian rule and political persecutions, she was branded a "counterrevolutionary" and imprisoned along with millions of other dissidents. Zhao's prison letters and poetry (much of it written in blood), along with her rediscovered Christian faith-which the author deems the "backbone of her rebellion"-buoyed her amid torture, deprivation, and ultimately execution. VERDICT Lian Xi honors this spirited and courageous young woman with an enlightening biography of her life and troubled times.-Chad Comello, Morton Grove P.L., IL © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Table of Contents

Introductionp. 1
Chapter 1 To Live under the Sunp. 11
Chapter 2 Exchanging Leather Shoes for Straw Sandalsp. 33
Chapter 3 The Crownp. 63
Chapter 4 A Spark of Firep. 91
Chapter 5 Shattered Jadep. 117
Chapter 6 Lamplight in the Snowy Fieldsp. 149
Chapter 7 The White-Haired Girl of Tilanqiaop. 177
Chapter 8 Blood Letters Homep. 205
Afterwordp. 241
Acknowledgmentsp. 249
Notesp. 253
Bibliographyp. 293
Indexp. 319