I describe the government-issued anthology textbook for Chinese Students. It is good, but has the obvious deficiency of containing only snippets of the greater works. A story by Steinbeck, for example, has only one chapter. So this is just one reason why I began the semester with an allegorical novel about following your dreams.
They were a tough crowd. I introduced my first two literature classes to my concept of learning as a journey. At first their faces were impenetrable masks. Then I told them, “Even in America we know about Chair Mao’s famous Long March, and the founding of the People’s Republic of China.” Their faces lit up with pride. That’s when I knew my students understood me. “So this is an honor for me to be here on the China’s 60th anniversary, and be your guide on another journey. And it is an honor to be part of your education in the beginning of the Chinese Century. Of course, this journey will…