Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Ping Fu Defends ‘Bend, Not Break’ Memoir Against Online Chinese Attack

Feb 4, 2013 - The Book Beast

Furious at the airing of China’s dirty laundry in Ping Fu’s new memoir, Chinese commenters have kicked off an online assault. The tech entrepreneur tells Katie Baker the vitriol feels like the public shame sessions of her youth

“It’s like I’m living the book title,” says Ping Fu, author of the new memoir Bend, Not Break. Over the past week, the Geomagic CEO and her book have become the targets of a virulent attack by China’s Internet vigilantes, who have slammed her account of the country’s Mao-era troubles and lampooned the book on Amazon with a flood of one-star reviews. But to her critics and bullies, Ping has a simple reply: “I will stay strong, and I will not break.”

Artist, scientist and founder of Geomagic, Ping Fu speaks during TED at SXSW on March 11, 2012, in Austin, Texas. (Anna Webber/Getty)

The bloggers began their Amazon blitz after Forbes China published an interview with Ping late last month in which several aspects of her story, including the use of the term “labor camps,” apparently got lost in translation. The memoir, which was released last month, tracks Ping’s tumultuous childhood during the Cultural Revolution, when she was forcibly orphaned and left to raise her younger sister alone, through her immigration to the United States and her years as an entrepreneur of Geomagic, which consults on 3-D technologies. Critics have questioned the timeline of Ping’s account, along with some of the more gruesome details of the story, including a childhood rape and the public quartering of a “black element” by the Red Guards. When Forbes followed up to correct the details in its interview after a prominent Chinese academic and other Internet users cried foul, the site was deluged with commenters calling the author a liar and a fake, and accusing her of fabricating everything from her knowledge of English to her account of public executions by the Red Guard. (In addition to the Forbes follow-up, Ping clarified many of the facts in a separate article over the weekend.)

More at The Book Beast

1 comment:

Steven Shao said...

I do not understand why "attack" needs to be used here.