More Reading

Well, last I had left, I was writing about my joy of the rain, followed by waking up to one of the largest days of flooding that I have ever encountered.  Eight and a half inches of rain over the course of about three days.  A river was running around my house, which happens to sit on a very large field.  When I have some time I will put up the pictures that I was able to take of the aftermath, along with what little story can be included.
As usual, I haven’t been keeping up with the writing.  I have, fortunately enough, been finding the time to study and to read some great works, most recently working on Paul Theroux’s ‘Riding the Iron Rooster’, as well as Roderick Mac Farquhar’s ‘Mao’s Last Revolution’, a great history of China’s Cultural Revolution.  Amazon pulled a fast one on me and claimed that Theroux’s work was published in 2006.  As it turns out, it was really just a second printing, the first work was published in 1988, making it an interesting but generally outdated read (that’s a bit of the history student speaking).  As of yet, I have not found it to be nearly so profound as Ghost Train, though it is still quite entertaining.  The work on the Cultural Revolution is absolutely astounding.  Macfarquhar is one of the leading historians of modern China, with particular expertise in the 1950s and 60s.  I have been meaning for some time to brush up on my understanding of this period in time, and this book has certainly been a great start.  Dense as hell, and often a bit hard to understand, but overwhelming in its coverage of what stands as a remorselessly chaotic decade.  I recommend it to anyone with some interest in China.
Well, that’s all for tonight, I have to go run a class for a bunch of 11th graders.  Hope all is well in your respective worlds.

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