Lives Of Poverty, Untouched By China’s Boom – Howard W. French

From Times:

When she gets sick, Li Enlan, 78, picks herbs from the woods that grow nearby instead of buying modern medicines. That is not a result of some philosophical choice, though. She has never seen a doctor and, like many residents of this area, lives in a meager barter economy, seldom coming into contact with cash.

“We eat somehow, but it’s never enough,” Ms. Li said. “At least we’re not starving.”

In this of southern Henan Province, in village after village, are too to heat their homes in the winter and many lack basic comforts like running . Mobile phones, a near ubiquitous symbol of upward mobility throughout much of this country, are seen as an impossible . People here often begin conversations with a phrase that is still not uncommon in today’s China: “We are poor.” [Full Text]

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