Remembering Shanghai’s unique narrative and design elements lend themselves not only to an entertaining reading experience, but also an immersive learning platform. Allow these educators to explain how and why this meticulously researched, beautifully illustrated book is an engaging way for students to learn about Chinese history.
“Remembering Shanghai brilliantly uses one family’s saga to touch on twentieth-century global history’s major themes—revolution, colonialism, migration, class, and, perhaps most important, the struggles of women for equality and fulfillment. Its colorful illustrations help bring the Sun family’s travails to life. My students loved this book and learned a lot from it.”
Dr. Alan McPherson, Professor of History, Temple University, who assigned Remembering Shanghai as required reading for “Global Connections,” a course introducing major themes in global history
Dr. William Zanella (ret.), Associate Professor of Asian History, Hawaii Pacific University
“Full of stories of family interactions that are rich in detail, Remembering Shanghai is a beautiful volume and much more than a personal memoir; it is most helpful for students of Shanghai’s—and by extension—China’s social, cultural and artistic history. The narrative includes just enough Chinese terminology, with clear explanations, that quickly clarify but do not hamper the flow. Anecdotes throughout the narrative are personal and vivid, and serve to educate the non-China specialist. The volume will be immensely helpful to instructors and students in a wide variety of China-related classrooms.”
William Feltz, Adjunct Arts Specialist, East-West Center, Honolulu
Dr. Frederick Lau, Chair and Professor, Department of Music, Chinese University of Hong Kong
“Creative and engaging—I’ve read lots of memoirs on the period, but this one stands out for its creativity and artistry. The memories and impressions of the period are presented to make them accessible to readers without a deep understanding of Chinese history. You can learn a lot from Remembering Shanghai, but it never feels like work to read it.”
James Carter, Professor of History, Saint Joseph’s University, and author of Champions Day: The End of Old Shanghai
“The Chaos piece together the exploits of previous generations, whose members—the ‘scoundrels’ of the book’s subtitle—parlayed good connections, good timing, and a talent for schemes into wealth and status. In addition to the stories themselves, Remembering Shanghai is filled with vintage photos of the metropolis and the stylish Sun family in the 1930s and 1940s, as well as charming watercolors … I recommend purchasing a physical copy: the vibrant illustrations and high-quality paper make this a volume that demands to be held and leafed through.”
Maura Cunningham, Digital Media Manager, Association of Asian Studies
At Honolulu’s Kamehameha Schools, aspiring writers in the 11th grade read Remembering Shanghai and met Claire over Zoom to discuss the process of writing and publishing a book.
“Remembering Shanghai begins with Isabel’s vivid descriptions of the glamorous fashion trends, social life, and her innocence at age 18, when she embarks on a holiday trip and an unexpected, dramatic chapter begins. Resonant and relatable to teens, the intimate family photos and illustrated descriptions of Shanghai traditions are like those shared by a grandmother or aunt. Remembering Shanghai has been shared at our high school with aspiring young writers to demonstrate how one family’s story can appeal to a wide audience, with an artful mix of writing, images, and audio recordings.”
Dr. Sally Nhomi, Internship Coordinator, Kamehameha Schools, Honolulu
Clockwise from top left: Social post by Andrew Field, Associate Dean, Undergraduate Programs, Duke Kunshan University, Kunshan, China; one of our younger readers; and Temple University history students read Remembering Shanghai in their “Global Connections” course.