Essays

Them Too

A new play in Chinese calls out sexual abuse – Huang Sizhou and Jordan Schneider

How I Learned to Drive, a 1998 Pulitzer Prize-winning drama about sexual abuse by Paula Vogel first performed in New York, made its debut in Chinese this December at one of Beijing’s leading independent theaters. The performance premiered as the country raged over recent scandals plaguing China, including allegations against professors at Nanchang and Beihang universities in the midst of China’s own #metoo movement. On a cold Friday night, over two hundred Beijingers, mostly in their twenties, came out to watch the play. Some couples held hands tightly and while others averted their eyes as they saw the character Uncle Peck subject his twelve-year-old niece Bit to unwanted touching.