Thoughts on Modern China:
John Pomfret in conversation with Scott Tong

Join our library community at 2:00 pm on January 27, 2019 , Koret Auditorium, San Francisco Main Library, 100 Larkin Street, San Francisco, for a lively discussion on modern China by noted author John Pomfret in conversation with Scott Tong, correspondent for Marketplace China.

This discussion is sponsored by 1990 Institute, a people to people nonprofit building the bridge between the US and China.  Refreshments will be served following the presentation in the Chinese Center on the third floor of the library, following the presentation.

This event is the kickoff for 1990 Institute’s BOOK BONANZA program, which will place the most interesting readings about modern China in public libraries across the US for all to access.


John Pomfret is an award-winning journalist who worked with The Washington Post for several decades. He currently is a contributing writer to the Post’s Global Opinions section. He was a foreign correspondent for 20 years, covering for eight years big wars and small in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Congo, Sri Lanka, Iraq, southwestern Turkey and northeastern Iran. Pomfret spent seven years covering China – one in the late 1980s during the Tiananmen Square protests and then from 1997 until the end of 2003 as the bureau chief for The Washington Post in Beijing. Following that he covered U.S. relations with Asia for the Post. In 2003, Pomfret was awarded the Osborne Elliot Award for the best coverage of Asia by the Asia Society. In 2007, Pomfret was awarded the Shorenstein Award from Harvard and Stanford universities for his lifetime coverage of Asia. He is the author of the critically-acclaimed “Chinese Lessons: Five Classmates and the Story of the New China.” His latest book (2016), “The Beautiful Country and the Middle Kingdom: America and China, 1776 to the Present” was awarded the 2017 Arthur Ross Award by the Council on Foreign Relations. Pomfret is also the co-author of the 2018 book, Chinese Influence and American Interests. Pomfret speaks, reads and writes Mandarin, having spent two years at Nanjing University in the early 1980s as part of one of the first groups of American students to study in China. He has been a bartender in Paris and practiced Judo in Japan.


Scott Tong is a correspondent for Marketplace’s Sustainability Desk, and was Marketplace China bureau chief from 2006-2010. He has reported from more than a dozen countries, and contributed to special series on the 2017 globalization backlashWater: The High Price of CheapVenezuela’s economic collapse; the rise of shareholder value and the Price of Profits; long-term U.S. job creation; the 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami; the 2011 famine in the Horn of Africa; and the economics of one child in China. His book, “A Village with My Name: A Family History of China’s Opening to the World” (University of Chicago Press, 12/2017) offers a long view of China’s opening to the West, told through the lives of five people across five generations in his own family.

More info about Book Bonanza:
Book Bonanza Kickoff
Book Bonanza Book List
Book Bonanza FAQ
Book Bonanza Expansion Plan