From Library Journal
An autobiographical account of a young man from a provincial town in North China who became caught up in the excitement and struggles of the Cultural Revolution (1966-69). As a teenager boarding at the top local high school, Gao found himself pulled in opposite directions: At school he exerted every effort to bring about the revolution by challenging authority, while at home his father, the highest official in the county, was a target. Gao tells his story well; it rings true with details of family life, stories of Red Guard treks around China, etc. The book, however, differs only in Gao's personal circumstances from many similar accounts, including Liang Heng and Judith Shapiro's Son of the Revolution ( LJ 2/15/83), and Yue Daiyun and Carolyn Wakeman's To the Storm ( LJ 11/1/85). A fine account, but not an essential purchase. David D. Buck, History Dept., Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"In Born Red, Gao Youan, a former Red Guard . . . tells us what it was like to be one of Mao's children in a provincial town four hours by train south of Peking. It is a terrible story, demonstrating that Mao and his crazed coterie were able to cripplee Chinese society for ten years, as well as cause the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people, because they had plenty of help from the masses."Politics
"Gao's moving account, which is surprisingly even-handed, viividly captures the pervasive sense of fear and uncertainty that washed over China during the tumultuous period from 19661969."Houston Chronicle
"The most detailed account of those difficult years I have read . . . Incredible as the events may seem, they are believable."New York Times Book Review
"Gao tells his story well; it rings true with details of family life, stories of Red Guard treks around China, etc. . . . A fine account."Library Journal
"A detailed and fascinating autobiographical account of China's 'Cultural Revolution' . . . Well written."CHOICE
"Although many memoirs of the Cultural Revolution have been published in recent years, Born Red stands out for the immediacy of its portrait of the Red Guards. Without ever abandoning the voice of someone on the edge of childhood, Gao Yuan creates a nuanced and complex picture of the lives of his peers . . . Gao's narrative is powerful, compelling, and deeply disturbing."American Histotical Review
"This latest of a number of personal accounts of the youth involved in the mid-1960s Chinese Cultural Revolution is in many ways the most useful and credible."History