Thursday, April 2, 2015 | 5:30 PM EDT - 7:00 PM EDT

The Henry Luce Foundation |, New York, NY

For three years, Public Intellectuals Program (PIP) fellow Michael Meyer rented a home in the rice-farming community of Wasteland (in Jilin Province), documenting the tremendous changes that were occurring. In Manchuria is a combination of memoir, reportage, and historical research, presenting a unique profile of China’s northeast. At a National Committee event on April 2, 2015, in New York City, Michael Meyer reflected on his three years living in Wasteland and discussed his new book In Manchuria.


Michael Meyer

Michael Meyer first went to China in 1995 with the Peace Corps. As the author of the acclaimed The Last Days of Old Beijing (2008), he received a Whiting Writers’ Award for nonfiction, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He also won a Lowell Thomas Award from the Society of American Travel Writers. Mr. Meyer’s stories have appeared in the New York Times, Time, Smithsonian, Sports Illustrated, Slate, the Financial Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune and on This American Life.  His new book, In Manchuria: A Village Called Wasteland and the Transformation of Rural China, was published early 2015.

Mr. Meyer had residencies at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers, and the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center. 

He recently taught literary journalism at the University of Hong Kong’s Journalism and Media Studies Center, and is now an assistant professor of English at the University of Pittsburgh where he teaches nonfiction writing. He divides his time between Pittsburgh and Singapore.