I was not a fan of the Chinese TV dramas for a long time since they tend to be aping Western dramas and lacking passion. This time I have to recommend “Daughter of the Mountain” for anyone interested in China; anyone interested in why West considers China a threat, and why the charge of genocide against China is nonsense.
The story was based on a real person. A young woman from Chung (national minority) minority from mountains of Southwest China. She graduated from Beijing’s Normal University with a master’s degree with scholarship for financial help. She decided to return to her home province as anti-poverty worker with the title of First Party Secretary in a village and a group of hamlets with a population around 1,000. She turned down secured job offers and her boyfriend’s marriage proposal to stay in Beijing. Instead, she counter proposed to him that she will accept his marriage proposal if he follows her to return to their home province. She arrived in the village in July 2017. In a little over 1 year, she managed to gain the trust of the villagers and their love. Obvious there probably are exaggerations to dramatize various problems and solutions, but the docudrama was effective in illustrating how difficult it is to irradicate poverty. She died in a flash flood during her way back to the village. From the real memorial, her picture shows the actress playing her is quite like her, pretty and young. She was 30.
As readers will said, this is a propaganda film; 30 episodes around 40 minutes each, yet from this docudrama you can glimpse why China is a threat to West or Capitalism. Such characters like Ms. Wong are rare yet not rare. It’s Christ like yet ordinary. We dismiss China’s claim of 800 million helped from extreme poverty; her slogan of “Serve the People”, but Biden and Trump take China as a serious threat. One can be sure there are other Uighur First Party Secretaries in Xinjiang doing similar jobs raising living standards, not ethnic cleansing.
In the U.S. we have plenty of unselfish people helping others. From Bill Gates donating billions trying to eliminate diseases, Leon Cooperman giving financial help to whole classes in Harlem for college expenses, to thousands helping in soup kitchens. From government food stamps to Medicaid. Yet what we have is instead more division, more resentment of unequal distribution of wealth, but not toward the billionaires, but toward homeless and illegal immigrants. There is hope in China and despair in the West.
Refreshing insight. We have to have hope, not just market culture. I think I saw a short version of this movie with a country doctor who helped cure many villagers and raised many babies.