Danke Li

Danke Li, Professor of East Asian Studies at Fairfield University, mesmerized her audience with her film and stories of the struggles of ordinary Chinese women during the Chinese war with Japan.  Millions of Chinese retreated to the city of Chongqing during the war years, severely straining food supplies and living quarters.  Chinese women were the backbone of families’ survival, Professor Li argued, keeping the home fires burning despite terrible loss and privation as the Japanese relentlessly bombed the city.

A presentation that brought to the Berkshires the voices of Chinese women whose stories have never before been told–and without the efforts of Professor Li and her students, might have been lost forever, since the women celebrated in the film and book are now reaching the end of their lives.