Holiday gifts for the China Watcher
The holidays are just around the corner and I thought it would be a good idea to put together a list of Holiday gifts for the China Watcher. Nowadays, it seems that everyone has at least one friend that is a China Watcher, but it is sometimes hard to know what to buy for that friend. This is why I’m putting together this list of “Holiday Gifts for the China Watcher.” The list is mostly books, but it also has an odd item or two that might make the China Watcher laugh. Whether, it is your son, father, mother, daughter, or just that quirky friend that will not shut-up about China; this list has you covered. I hope you enjoy and have a great holiday session!
Note: most of the links are affiliate links to Amazon. Also, I have not read most of the books on this list. As a “China Watcher” I feel these books would be interesting. (If you buy though me, I might be able to have a happy holiday and buy myself one of these books! 🙂
First up on the “Holiday gifts for the China Watcher” is “China’s Second Continent: How a Million Migrants Are Building a New Empire in Africa.” This book is about China’s recent incursions into Africa in pursuit of resources and profit. I find this interesting because I work for a company that is directly involved with this process. This is also an interesting topic for many China Watchers because how China influences Africa will effect the world’s geopolitics for years to come.
Next on the list is “The New Chinese Traveler: Business Opportunities from the Chinese Travel Revolution.” I had the chance to met and talk to Gary here in Beijing at the Bookworm. I rarely think people are smart and I usually find the information provided “weak,” but after hearing him speak and talking to him, I felt he had a ton of useful information and I left thinking he is smart and on topic. I have not read his book yet, but it is the next book on my “To Read.”
Next is “The End of Copycat China: The Rise of Creativity, Innovation, and Individualism in Asia.” This is something we are seeing everyday, especially in marketing and advertising. There is currently a major push from the government and private sectors to cultivate innovation and creativity. I have added
Next on the list is “One Billion Customers: Lessons from the Front Lines of Doing Business in China.” I have read most of this book and it is worth reading. The book is a little older now, but it is interesting to read the stories and learn more about business in China. Many of the lessons are still valid today. James McGregor is well-known and respected for his work here in China and I got the chance to see him in person when Scott Kronick had his book release, which I think is really cool! 🙂
Next is “The Problem of China.” This book is old, but I am adding it to the list because history repeats itself and looking back at China’s foreign policy is important to know more about China’s political culture. There is a lot of hate towards Japan in China and this takes a look at some of the problems China has faced throughout history. One review stated: “Bertrand Russell gives an in-depth account and analysis of the problems faced by China during the early 20th century. While analyzing the dynamics at play on the global front, he also attempts to identify the three most pressing issues which China faced internally–the need for an orderly government, industrial development under Chinese control and the spread of education.”
One of the things we can never ignore is The Party. The Party is Financial Times reporter Richard McGregor’s eye-opening investigation into China’s Communist Party, and the integral role it has played in the country’s rise as a global superpower and rival to the United States. Many books have examined China’s economic rise, human rights record, turbulent history, and relations with the U.S.; none until now, however, have tackled the issue central to understanding all of these issues: how the ruling communist government works. The Party delves deeply into China’s secretive political machine.
Next on the “Holiday gifts for the China Watcher” is “Where East Eats West: The Street-Smarts Guide to Business in China“. Already part of the MBA curriculum for Boston College, Rutgers and Colorado State University and winning praise by China veterans, Where East Eats West, uses Goodman’s unparalleled China experience to boil down the China business basics into fun, easy-to-digest lessons and ready-to-serve actions so you can steer clear of making China-rookie mistakes. It was designed to be the ultimate airplane book and entertains the China hand as much as it educates the China rookie through humorous, firsthand narratives that make the reader feel as if Goodman is sitting beside them, having a conversation.
Next is “Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China.” As the Beijing correspondent for The New Yorker, Evan Osnos was on the ground in China for years, witness to profound political, economic, and cultural upheaval. In Age of Ambition, he describes the greatest collision taking place in that country: the clash between the rise of the individual and the Communist Party’s struggle to retain control. He asks probing questions: Why does a government with more success lifting people from poverty than any civilization in history choose to put strict restraints on freedom of expression? Why do millions of young Chinese professionals—fluent in English and devoted to Western pop culture—consider themselves “angry youth,” dedicated to resisting the West’s influence? How are Chinese from all strata finding meaning after two decades of the relentless pursuit of wealth?
The days of rapid economic growth in China are over. Mounting debt and rising internal distortions mean that rebalancing is inevitable. Beijing has no choice but to take significant steps to restructure its economy. The only question is how to proceed. This book titled “Avoiding the Fall: China’s Economic Restructuring,” takes a look at the inevitable restructuring that must happen over the next decade.
Final on the list of “Holiday gifts for the China Watcher” is “Chinese Stuff .” This book is a fun look at some of the Chinese stuff you will encounter here in China. Chinese Stuff looks at everyday life for the average Chinese, especially examining the modern, ancient, and conventional tools and devices people use in their everyday life. With this book, the readers come to reflect and appreciate China’ unique – and often amusing – way of life.
These are just a few books that I think would be suitable for any friend or family member that is interested in China; present, future, and past! If you know of any other suitable gift to add to the list of “Holiday gifts for the China Watcher,” than feel free to comment and let us know!