March - 2021 - Big Sister - Jung Chang

Big Sister, Little sister, Red sister by Jung Chang


Date: 31st March 2021




They were the most famous sisters in China. As the country battled through a hundred years of wars, revolutions and seismic transformations, the three Soong sisters from Shanghai were at the centre of power, and each of them left an indelible mark on history.

Red Sister, Ching-ling, married the 'Father of China', Sun Yat-sen, and rose to be Mao's vice-chair.
Little Sister, May-ling, became Madame Chiang Kai-shek, first lady of pre-Communist Nationalist China and a major political figure in her own right.

Big Sister, Ei-ling, became Chiang's unofficial main adviser - and made herself one of China's richest women.

All three sisters enjoyed tremendous privilege and glory, but also endured constant mortal danger. They showed great courage and experienced love, as well as despair and heartbreak. They remained close emotionally, even when they were in opposing political camps, and, Ching-ling the Red Sister, dedicated herself to destroying her two sisters' worlds.


It is a story of love, war, intrigue, bravery, glamour and betrayal, it takes us on a journey from Canton to Hawaii to New York, from exiles' quarters in Japan and Berlin to secret meeting rooms in Moscow, and from the compounds of the Communist elite in Beijing to the corridors of power in democratic Taiwan. In a group biography that is personal and epic, Jung Chang reveals the lives of three extraordinary women who helped shape twentieth-century China.


It turned out to be more of an introductory discussion of the book. As we got into the discussion, the group decided they’d like to add the comparative discussion, especially as it recounts both History and Drama so they forwarded the availability of a movie version of the book and decided to table the book in all its forms until next month, when they could benefit from the multimedia approach. They felt that one meeting did not do justice to the entire content and complexity of this book especially the historical aspect which affects China as it is today.