Return To Fuling, China

Feb 27, 2013

Peter Hessler
Credit HarperCollins

When Peter Hessler first arrived in the remote Chinese river town of Fuling, the only way to get there was by boat. There was only one other foreigner living in town, and a trip to the market could cause a sensation among the people as they had almost never seen non Chinese visitors. It was 1996, and Hessler arrived as a Peace Corps teacher and stayed two years. Recently, he went back for a visit to explore the changes that the Three Gorges Dam has made in Fuling. Much of the old city is under water, but there are ways to glimpse the past.

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Robert MacFarlane reads from his latest book.

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Dick speaks with Denise Dennis, who is in a charge of her family farm - one that reaches back to before Abraham Lincoln was born. The farm is unusual because it was rare for African Americans to own property and keep the property in one family. She decided to lease the underground rights to an oil company - for fracking - in the hopes of preserving the 118 acres of land as an historic site.

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