Season in Red
My great leap forward into the new China
By Kirsty Needham
In a country of communist slogans and transvestite nightclubs, where teen advice columns are screened by government censors and employees live together in 'Big Brother' style apartment buildings, Kirsty Needham discovers there's more to being a 'foreign expert' on a Chinese newspaper than she ever could have imagined.
When Kirsty Needham went to Beijing as a 'Foreign Expert' she had no idea quite how foreign - or confronting - the experience would be. Her romantic expectations of how it would be to work and live as a journalist in Beijing are swiftly swept away by the bizarre realities of this extraordinary country. As she grapples with the strange and often contradictory world of modern China - a country of communist slogans and transvestite nightclubs, SARS scares and SWAT-like teams of tourist handlers - Kirsty becomes embroiled in a world that constantly challenges her perceptions as it quietly wins her heart.
By turns enlightening, hilarious and sometimes not a little scary, Kirsty's is a unique take on contemporary China as it is evolving right now. From a city where where St Bernard dogs are the new status symbols and nice middle-class Beijingers play the NASDAQ for fun she provides a fresh, compelling outsider's view of a little known and fascinating part of the world.
Kirsty Needham has been a journalist since 1994, and since 1997 a news reporter and feature writer for the The Sydney Morning Herald. In 2002/03, she worked as a freelance contributor to The South China Morning Post and in 2004 accepted a Medialink/ Australia-China Council fellowship to spend three months in China working as a journalist with the China Daily in Beijing.
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- Publication date:
01 Jun 2007
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