Chinese Book on one-child policy

$3,178 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 80 people in 24 months
My book, "One Child," on China's one-child policy was published this year. (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

Unfortunately, the people most affected by the policy are not able to read it.

Thanks to tightening censorship in China, I am unable to get a mainland Chinese publisher, or even one in Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Therefore, I have created a Chinese version of my book, and am releasing a free download of it aimed at mainland Chinese readers.  Help support efforts like this that allow important messages to spread far and wide!

Previously, books on "banned" topics in China used to find their way to mainland readers through Hong Kong or Taiwan, but the chill on publishing has extended even beyond China as Beijing's influence grows.

Recently, in a twist worthy of Kafka, several booksellers in Hong Kong who dared print unflattering stories on China’s leaders mysteriously disappeared, only to appear on mainland China making televised confessions to a host of alleged crimes.

Needless to say, this has created a climate of fear among writers and publishers to produce anything remotely critical of Beijing.

To write a book about China that most Chinese cannot read is to accept defeat.

I have interviewed many Chinese people for this book -- from academics to officials to everyday folk. They spoke honestly, and at some risk to themselves, about how the one-child policy shaped their lives. Their observations and experiences deserve to be part of the conversation about China’s past and future. I was not willing to have their voices silenced.

In addition to a free download of it aimed at mainland Chinese readers, I will also have versions in simplified and traditional Chinese available for sale via electronic download, Amazon Kindle, or print-on-demand, for folks outside the great Firewall.

All this has taken a significant amount of resources: I have had to pay for a translation out of my own pocket. Even finding a translator was no an easy task. One candidate bowed out for fear of political retribution. My current translator has asked to remain anonymous.

I’ve also had to turn myself into a mini-publisher, learning about file formatting, marketing, cover design, copyright issues, rights management—all for a book which I am, for the most part, giving away free.

I am turning to you to help me cover the costs of this highly unorthodox approach to publishing.

If you help me succeed in this venture, it may encourage other writers whose works have been repressed by authoritarian regimes to consider new ways of reaching their audiences.

It will be a nod to human ingenuity, journalism and truth-telling.

Most of all, it is a gesture of hope that the freedom of ideas will prevail.

Thank you!

"A searing, important, and eminently readable exploration of China's one-child policy."
"Not to be missed ... [Fong] combines tough, broad economic analysis with individual stories."
— ECONOMIST / 1843
“A timely, important work that takes stock of the one-child policy’s damage…ONE CHILD is, like the policy’s abolition, long overdue, and Ms. Fong was the perfect person to write it.”
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Will be in Asia for book promotions in Nov-December, making stops in Malaysia, India, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Some of you know my struggles to get a Chinese-language version of my book out (the good ship Censor..) so I'm pleased to say part of the reason I'm out there is to promote the launch of my Chinese language book, in traditional script, by Taiwan's Acropolis Press.

Since censorship will still be tight in mainland China, I'll still maintain the free digital version of my book in Chinese simplified script.

The money I received from Acropolis did not wholly cover the costs of the project, which is why I'm still maintaining this GoFundMe page.

Every dollar you give will help someone, probably in mainland China, read this, which would otherwise be difficult to do.

And just to give you an idea of how difficult things continue to be in China for writers--a writer friend of mine told me recently they could NOT get their publication out on schedule because basically every printing press in China was tied up reprinting copies of Xi Jinping's book ahead of the important Party Congress this fall.

Imagine if every printing press in US was ordered to churn out nothing but Art of the Deal!

So many many thanks for all your support for this worthy project. As I said before, we must be free to read, if we are to be free to think.
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A three month update: Thank you ALL of you for supporting this project! I hope to have some exciting news regarding the Chinese-language print edition I can definitively share soon with you. But in meantime, you should know that collectively, your contributions, along with contributors on my GoFundMe page, as well as private donations, have collectively helped me reach about a third of my funding goals in the short time this project has launched. In the meantime, the project has received a great deal of attention in Chinese media, with pieces in Next, World Journal Initium, Voice of America (Mandarin) to name a few. I've also written a piece, "The Last BookSeller, " for the newly launched PEN HK chapter. For more frequent updates on my work and thoughts, please check out my One CHild Facebook page ( as well as my website In a few days I'll be in Australia for book promotion, so if you're in that part of the world, check out my FBevents page.

"While the business of criticizing Beijing has always been somewhat hazardous, I cannot think of a time in recent history when it has been more difficult, if not to say dangerous, to do so..We can all do something. We must all do something."
Explaining my China Project
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Hi everyone, this took a little longer for me to upload as am in India doing book promotion, but for those who've supported me, huge thanks, and appreciate if you share this short video of me explaining my project and motivations.
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$3,178 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 80 people in 24 months
Created November 28, 2016
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Sarah Neville Jiménez
13 months ago

Thank you for your effort and dedication!

14 months ago
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