portrays the delights and problems of contemporary China. The turmoil of the recent past and the frenetic changes of the present are background for a story about cultural conflict, friendship, suspicion and unexpected disillusionment. Moulton and Robinson share their joys and anguish, their frustration and dawning understanding as they fall in love with this alien culture. They adjust to the ordinary--the sounds of chickens being slaughtered in the restaurant as they eat, and learning the martial art of boarding a Chinese bus. They survive the frightening--being surrounded by street punks in an area closed to foreigners and undergoing hours of interrogation by Public Security Police about student demonstrations. They study the Chinese art of indirectness and cultivate a network of "connections." They are taught the power of jealousy and the value of a Chinese secret, something to be used as a gift or bribe and even counterfeited when the genuine article is not available. Their moral values are challenged as they learn how Chinese bear responsibility not only for their own actions but for those of family, friends, and colleagues; how interfering in the personal lives of others is not only condoned but expected; how truth is bent to accommo date social control, "face" and personal advantage. Plots and conflicts surround them as they confront bizarre explanations, mysterious denials and unexpected confidences.
"SCALING THE DRAGON goes deeper than other accounts by foreigners, deeper into the real Chinese world. The story is truer than other accounts I have read. It really moved me."
--YE JING, Wuhan Iron & Steel Research Institute
"I found SCALING THE DRAGON completely charming."
--CRAIG NELSON, Harper Collins
"It's a fascinating glimpse into life in China."
--JOANNE WYCKOFF, Beacon Press
"[The authors] have a deep knowledge and genuine interest in China and Chinese people."
JANICE MOULTON and GEORGE ROBINSON hold PhDs from the University of Chicago. They have taught at the University of Chicago, Duke University, Central China University and are now members of the Research Faculty at Smith College. They wrote The Organization of Language, the book responsible for their invitation to China, Ethical Problems In Higher Education and have just completed a novel about contemporary China.