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Arts and Humanities | Chinese Studies | English Language and Literature


Mara Faulkner


This thesis is a collection of essays in which I explore, discuss, and analyze selected aspects of the semester I spent in China through the CSB/SJU study abroad program. It consists of four essays: "On the Value of Trains," "Through the Layers: Getting Off the Bus and Making it Real," "Little Carrot and the Dalai Lama," and "From Minnesota to the Middle Kingdom and Back Again: Growing and Changing in China." The idea behind the entire collection is that there is more to China than most Americans get through the very limited media coverage of it. Each essay involves a different aspect of my experience that contributed to giving me a much fuller picture of China than I would have had had I not gone there, not made some of the choices that I did, and not undertaken this project. It is an analysis of some of the attitudes and behaviors I noticed in myself and other Western guests in China. And it is something of an account of my trying to walk the line between loving my experiences in China and abhorring certain policies and attitudes of the government and the people who give the government its authority.