The Barefoot Lawyer

The Barefoot Lawyer

A Blind Man's Fight for Justice and Freedom in China

Book - 2015
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It was like a scene out of a thriller: one night in April 2012, China's most famous political activist--a blind, self-taught lawyer--climbed over the wall of his heavily guarded home and escaped. For days, his whereabouts remained unknown; after he turned up at the American embassy in Beijing, a furious round of high-level negotiations finally led to his release and a new life in the United States.

Chen Guangcheng is a unique figure on the world stage, but his story is even more remarkable than we knew. The son of a poor farmer in rural China, blinded by illness when he was an infant, Chen was fortunate to survive a difficult childhood. But despite his disability, he was determined to educate himself and fight for the rights of his country's poor, especially a legion of women who had endured forced sterilizations under the hated "one child" policy. Repeatedly harassed, beaten, and imprisoned by Chinese authorities, Chen was ultimately placed under house arrest. After a year of fruitless protest and increasing danger, he evaded his captors and fled to freedom.

Both a riveting memoir and a revealing portrait of modern China, this passionate book tells the story of a man who has never accepted limits and always believed in the power of the human spirit to overcome any obstacle.

Publisher: Toronto : Allen Lane, ©2015.
ISBN: 9780670067671
Characteristics: xvi, 330 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates :,illustrations (chiefly colour), maps ;,25 cm.


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Sep 08, 2015

A great first-person account of a self-taught lawyer who stood up to the establishment in China, especially when it came to disability rights and fighting against the brutal practices used to enforce the "One Child" policy. If only more people in the Middle Kingdom had the guts of Guangcheng Chen , perhaps democracy and human rights would finally come to the country.

Jul 04, 2015

Those of us who are sighted and live in a free, democratic country will never fully appreciate what Guangcheng Chen underwent. "The Barefoot Lawyer" is his story and talks of his fight against injustice, discrimination, and jut plain inhumane treatment. Why was he discriminated against? Because he was blind; and more importantly dared to question his treatment. Guangcheng was determined not to settle for a 'career' as a fortuneteller or storyteller which was the lot of blind people in his village. He stood up for his rights and those of other disabled people and poor villagers and paid an inordinate price. A very well-told, captivating memoir.

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