Kristine's Reviews > Factory Girls: From Village to City in a Changing China

Factory Girls by Leslie T. Chang
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's review
Nov 30, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: china, greatest-hits

A little longer than it needs to be but it's very enlightening. It really makes you realize how fortunate we are to be employed or even unemployed in the USA.

These girls leave home as young as 14 and are hired at talent markets so they don't even see the conditions of the factory until the first day on the job. They also live at the factory, sleeping in dorms. Working from 8am to midnight with two short (10 minute) breaks is not unheard of. Employers also withold pay so they cannot quit without permission. If they walk off they lose all their back pay. One factory told their employees that their client was behind in payments so they were docking all employee wages by 30% until the debt was paid. Don't even get me started on discrimination.

I could go on and on but you really need to read the book. The author gets to know some of the girls quite well. there are chapters on the dating life, learning English, etc etc and she even reveals a bit of her own dynamic Chinese history.

I recently saw a story on the news about Chinese girls returning home after losing their factory jobs. It really takes on a whole new meaning since I read the book.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Jeanette (new)

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Can I just tell you how frustrating it is to go from store to store looking for a particular item NOT made in China, and not having any CHOICE?!! GRRRRR!

Kristine Can't do it. It doesn't bother me so much when it comes to electronics but food is a whole other matter.

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