By: Ji Li Jiang
Red Scarf Girl is a story that deals with the courage of a girl and her family when they are struggling to survive during China's Cultural Revolution in 1966. Ji Li Jiang, the author, tells her story about the hardships that herself, family and friends went through. Also the lessons that they learned.
Chairman Mao Ze-Dong, China's leader launched the Cultural Revolution that was intended to "break with the old and establish the new." This brought hardships to everyone. Many Chinese had to accustom to forgetting old ideas, old cultures, old habits, and anything that dealt with "old" China. The things that were referred to as old customs were called Four Olds. They had Red Guards to help rebel against the old system. They would search houses for any four olds. When they found something they would confiscate and destroy it.
Ji Li Jiang was born into a family who used to be wealthy landlords that the Party did not like. Landlords were said to be awful men because they exploited farmers. They were enemies and were considered worse than criminals and counterrevolutionaries. A lot of people believed Ji Li's father, Lao Jiang, was a rightist who attacked the Party and its socialism. This status caused Ji Li, her parents, grandma, brother and sister to be denied certain opportunities. Ji Li Jiang was a girl that did well in school and did not want to be talked about. She goes through endeavors of self truth like when she was going to change her name to get rid of all the bad luck and humiliation the name Jiang gave her. She hated her family of landlords and was ashamed to be part of a family that everyone hated. Later she realizes her family was too precious to forget and too rare to rare to replace.
The Cultural Revolution had caused her father to go to jail for suspicion of committing a serious crime, her families treasures to be trashed or broken into pieces, fear of being arrested, her mothers sickness, lies,...