Chen Guangcheng

The son of a poor farmer in rural China and blinded by illness when he was an infant, Chen Guangcheng became a self-taught lawyer and a political activist. Repeatedly harassed, beaten, and imprisoned by Chinese authorities, Chen was ultimately placed under house arrest. Despite his disability, he was determined to escape to freedom and fight for the rights of his country’s poor. After two years, one morning he climbed over the wall of his heavily guarded home and escaped. Days later, he turned up at the American embassy in Beijing, and after high-level negotiations, was able to leave China and begin a new life in the United States. Both a riveting memoir and a revealing portrait of modern China, “The Barefoot Lawyer” tells the story of a man who has never accepted limits and always believed in the power of the human spirit to overcome any obstacle.

Chen Guangcheng