Thirty-two years ago Mrs Li and Mr Wu
from Zhejiang abandoned their second baby daughter at a marketplace. Mrs Wang
Maochen from Beijing has seven children, but six of them are illegal so they could
not go to university, could not take a job, go to the doctor, or marry, or even
buy a train ticket. Zhao Min from Guangzhou first learned about the
concept of a sibling at university, in her town there were no sisters or
With the Chinese government now adapting
to a two child policy, Secrets and Siblings outlines the scale
of its tragic consequences, showing how Chinese family and society has been
forever changed. In doing so it also challenges many of our misconceptions
about family life in China, arguing that it is the state, rather than popular
prejudice, that has hindered the adoption of girls within China.
At once brutal and beautifully
hopeful, Secrets and Siblings asks what the state and its
children will do now that they are becoming adults.