Updated 2 January 2018. Two weeks after its launch in English, the Chinese language edition of The People’s Republic of the Disappeared was published for the first time today. The Chinese edition is available from this website in PDF and MOBI versions, for free, and also as paperback for U.S, U.K., Europe and more at Amazon.
The People’s Republic of the Disappeared, with a foreword by Dr. Teng Biao, provides a comprehensive and chilling portrait of Residential Surveillance at a Designated Location (RSDL) through the first-person accounts of 11 of its victims.
The English language edition is aimed at a global readership and focused on raising attention about this grave and little understood human rights violation. The target audience of this new Chinese edition is Chinese citizens – human rights defenders, lawyers, activists, bloggers, and, most crucially, their families – to help them better understand and prepare for the possibility of themselves becoming victims.
In the two weeks since its English-language release, The People’s Republic of the Disappeared has garnered some impressive reviews and coverage. Here is a sample:
- The New York Times called the stories in the book “rare in detail,” describing RSDL as “a widespread practice of whisking people into secret detention — ‘disappearing’ them into a labyrinth where China’s stunted legal protections can do little to prevent abuse.”
- South China Morning Post reviews the book, saying “At just over 200 pages, the book can almost be finished in one sitting, but it would make for a very heavy session.”
- Radio France International’s Spotlight ran an extensive interview with the book’s editor Michael Caster, who spoke about how the legalization of RSDL demonstrates China’s “chilling reliance on enforced disappearances.”
- ABC radio interviewed The People’s Republic of the Disappeared editor, Michael Caster. He talked about the key victims of RSDL – front-line rights defenders in China, how they help others to defend their rights, and why they are so feared by the state.
- Kong Tsung-gan‘s annual “Best human rights books of the year” for 2017 listed The People’s Republic of the Disappeared: “Reading this is like taking a direct glimpse at the cruelty and brutality that are the heart of Communist Party rule.”
- Veteran scholar of Chinese law, Jerome A. Cohen, featured The People’s Republic of the Disappeared on his blog calling it a “noteworthy” and “deserving” book.
- Hong Kong Free Press ran both an opinion piece on Wang Quanzhang by Peter Dahlin, the author of one of the first-person accounts in The People’s Republic of the Disappeared and ran an extract from Wang Yu’s chapter in that book.
- QUARTZ focused on our chapter written by Wang Yu, covering the abuses she suffered under RSDL such as being forced to strip and taunting her about her son’s safety, and why she finally agreed to write about her terrible ordeal.
- CNN ran a longer piece titled The Disappeared both on TV and in webprint, after a year’s work interviewing several of the people whose full accounts appear in the book.