WEALTH AND POWER: CHINA’S LONG MARCH TO THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY
Through a series of lively and absorbing portraits of iconic modern Chinese leaders and thinkers, John Delury and Orville Schell--two of today’s foremost specialists on China--provide a panoramic narrative of this country’s rise to preeminence that is at once analytical and personal. How did a nation, after a long and painful period of dynastic decline, intellectual upheaval, foreign occupation, civil war, and revolution, manage to burst forth onto the world stage with such an impressive run of hyperdevelopment and wealth creation—culminating in the extraordinary dynamism of China today?
Wealth and Power answers this question by examining the lives of eleven influential officials, writers, activists, and leaders whose contributions helped create modern China. This fascinating survey begins in the lead-up to the first Opium War with Wei Yuan, the nineteenth-century scholar and reformer who was one of the first to urge China to borrow ideas from the West. It concludes in our time with human-rights advocate and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, an outspoken opponent of single-party rule. Along the way, we meet such titans of Chinese history as the Empress Dowager Cixi, public intellectuals Feng Guifen, Liang Qichao, and Chen Duxiu, Nationalist stalwarts Sun Yat-sen and Chiang Kai-shek, and Communist Party leaders Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, and Zhu Rongji.
“Wealth and Power offers everything readers might expect from its two eminent authors. It is both sweeping and specific, authoritative and lively, sympathetic and critical, offering the perspective of both the hedgehog and the fox.”
—James Fallows, national correspondent, The Atlantic
“Orville Schell and John Delury have delivered a brilliantly original and essential book: the road map to China’s quest for national salvation... Vivid, literate, and brimming with insights, Wealth and Power deserves to become a classic.”
—Evan Osnos, China correspondent, The New Yorker