Considering the articles in recent years regarding toy
recalls or melamine-tainted milk products, Factory Girls
serves as a timely reminder of the human story behind the
Chinese factories we often view in critical terms. Leslie T.
Chang examines an easily forgotten facet: that factories
represent a chance for millions to leave a rural life in
search of higher wages, to escape traditional expectations,
and to search for adventurea migratory phenomenon known as
, "to go out".
The city of
is brought to the foreground through a blend of immersion
reporting, diary excerpts and research. As you would expect,
we're given accounts of what it's like to work in the
factories, but the best chapters detail life outside the
confines of the assembly...
Beyond the Book
is an example of immersion journalism. Immersion
journalism involves more depth than traditional newspaper reporting, which is
limited by column space and time, and includes less of the reporter's own
thoughts and reactions to events. Classic examples include Truman Capote's
In Cold Blood
(1966), Joan Didion's Slouching Towards Bethlehem
George Orwell's Homage to Catalonia
(1952). More recent examples include
Nickel & Dimed
The style is related to but different from New Journalism, which developed in the 1960s and 70s and
was first described by Tom Wolfe. New Journalism, which tends to be found
in magazines, not newspapers, uses...