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Moying Li M'82 Recalls Life in China, Impressions of Swarthmore

Moying Li M'82 Recalls Early
  Life in China, Impressions of Swarthmore

by Alisa Giardinelli

Moying Li M'82

Moying Li '82


Moying Li M'82 is the author of Snow Falling in Spring: Coming of Age in China During the Cultural Revolution, recently the subject of a New York Times book review and chosen as an editor's choice. The memoir recalls how her family survived in Beijing during Mao's Great Leap Forward. When she came to the U.S. in 1980 to attend Swarthmore, she was one of the first students allowed to leave China since 1949.

"After my first psychology class with Alfred Bloom, my then academic advisor [and current president], I followed him out of the classroom and asked, 'But, Professor Bloom, what is the answer to your question? You never gave us the answer,'" she recalls in the  Times interview. "He smiled and said, 'I know, having grown up in China, you are used to definitive answers. But isn't it wonderful sometimes to have open-ended questions without answers?' It's the first time anyone had provided me with this kind of perspective."  more

Li, an analyst in investment management, is also the author of Beacon Hill: The Life and Times of a Historic Neighborhood, in which she explores a much-revered corner of old Boston. more