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Yiyun Li, "Listening is Believing"

Listening Is Believing

Be content with what you have. Desire nothing and nothing will be lacking. By the time I entered high school, I could tell which of my classmates had been brought up, like me, on Tao Te Ching, the wisdom worn as an eggshell of pride.


In this short personal essay originally published in The New Yorker, author Yiyun Li describes her childhood in 1980s Beijing and the origins of her desire to study English and move to the United States.

Li did eventually move to the U.S., where she began writing fiction in English. She is now a very successful writer.