Memoir: In Search of My Homeland by Er Tai Gao

by    /  July 2, 2011  / No comments

A memoir translated by Robert Dorsett and David Pollard

In Search of My Homeland: A Memoir of a Chinese Labor Camp chronicles Er Tai Gao’s life under the political persecution of China’s Communist government. In 1957 at the age of 22, Gao published an essay titled On Beauty, arguing that the nature of beauty is subjective and individual—a stance that caused him to be branded a “rightist” by the Mao regime. He was sentenced to three years in a hard labor camp in the harsh central desert. During his sentence, 90 percent of his fellow prisoners died. Over the next 30 years, Gao was sent to labor and reeducation camps several times because of his outspoken views. He was last arrested in Beijing in1989 during the Tiananmen Square protests and held for six months without charges. In 1992 he and his wife Maya escaped China through Hong Kong. They were granted political refugee status in the United States the following year.

In Search of My Homeland is the story of his imprisonment for “thought crimes” against the Communist state and his eventual escape to freedom.

CLICK HERE to buy a copy of In Search of My Homeland.

READ Er Tai Gao’s essay on Tiananmen Square that appeared in Sampsonia Way, September 2009.

READ the Los Angeles Times review of In Search of My Homeland.

READ the New York Times review of In Search of My Homeland.

IN SEARCH OF MY HOMELAND, By Er Tai Gao, translated by Robert Dorsett and David Pollard, copyright ©2009 by Er Tai Gao. Reprinted by permission of Ecco.

About the Author

Sampsonia Way is an online magazine sponsored by City of Asylum/Pittsburgh that seeks to protect and advocate for writers who may be endangered, to educate the public about threats to writers and literary expression, and to create a community in which endangered writers thrive and literary culture is a valued part of life.

View all articles by