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At the end of the 19th century China and tsarist Russia signed a contract to build the Chinese Eastern Railroad.  Before the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, Russians from the Russian empire moved to Harbin to help build the city and its economy. During the Revolution and the Russian Civil War, thousands of Russian refugees fled to Harbin.  In the 1930s, life changed drastically for Harbiners when Japan occupied Manchuria, and later in 1945, when the Soviet army invaded that region.  By 1950, practically all the Russians had left Manchuria.

One hour followed by Q&A session and signing by author of her book Stateless in Shanghai.

Event detail:
Where: Glam, No.5 The Bund (corner of Guangdong Lu) 广东路20号(外滩5号)7楼
When: 13 Oct 2018 – 4 pm
Tickets: 85 RMB/40 RMB
Liliane Willens

Liliane Willens was born of Russian parentage in the former French Concession of Shanghai, China. Her parents, she and her siblings experienced World War II under the Japanese military occupation, and later the Chinese civil war between the Nationalists and the communists. While waiting for her US immigration visa, Liliane lived two years under the newly established People’s Republic of China.

When Liliane immigrated to the US, she studied at Boston University where she received her undergraduate degree, M.A. and Ph.D. in French Language and 18th century French Literature. Dr. Willens taught these subjects at Boston College and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She published a book on Voltaire and several articles on 18th century France. Later moving to Washington, DC, she worked for the US Agency for International Development and Peace Corps.

When she retired she gave talks on cruise ships sailing around the world, and presently lectures on China and Old Shanghai in the greater Washington, DC area, in various cities in the US and overseas.

Dr. Willens’s book Stateless in Shanghai has been published in Chinese and in German.