Aban (Aby) 's Reviews > Factory Girls: From Village to City in a Changing China

Factory Girls by Leslie T. Chang
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May 16, 10

Read in May, 2010

In 'Factory Girls', Leslie Chang describes the lives and working conditions of young women who move from rural areas to work in Dongguan, a town in China dominated by factories and little else. (She also, at times, interweaves the story of her own family, who left China to settle in the United States.)

I certainly learned a great deal about the lives of these young women and was filled with admiration for them in many ways:
- their courage in leaving their villages to travel to a strange town to seek employment. (Some were as young as sixteen years of age.)
- their determination to work extraordinarily hard to study and better themselves
- their self-reliance

Sadly, the 'system' often failed these factory girls:
- they were not trained adequately or only in the most limited way
- they found themselves having to lie about their training and experience, in order to obtain better jobs
- the self-improvement and language schools they attended were sub-standard, to say the least

All the information in the book was of considerable interest. However, I found Chang's style of writing very dull! This surprised me, as her book had rave reviews. In fact, by the middle of the book, I had to force myself to continue reading, and gave up two thirds of the way through!
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