Reading an interesting book review in The Economist, Game theory, Golf in China, Birdies, bribes and bulldozers, What the rise of golf says about economic change in the Middle Kingdom, 14 juni 2014. Fragment:
Dan Washburn, a journalist who lived in China for a decade, uses golf as a barometer of change. Under Mao Zedong the sport was banned, like so many things that were decadent and fun. When the country began to open up under Deng Xiaoping, a few golf courses were allowed, to entertain foreign investors. As China grew richer, more and more locals wanted to try the sport. Suddenly more golf courses were being built in China than anywhere else, despite the fact that their construction was technically illegal.
For Mr Washburn golf is symbolic not only of China’s economic rise but also of “the less glamorous realities of a nation’s awkward and arduous evolution from developing to developed: corruption, environmental neglect, disputes over rural land rights and an ever-widening gap between rich and poor”.
He tackles these great themes indirectly, by interweaving the stories of three men whose lives were affected by the golf boom. One is Mr Zhou, whose rise from peasant to professional golfer is, as Mr Washburn puts it, “the stuff of movies”. Hugely talented but utterly skint, Mr Zhou struggled for years to make a living playing a rich man’s game. He travelled to tournaments on slow trains because he could not afford to fly and slept in sordid flophouses miles from the courses.
View original: The Economist.
Gerelateerd: China Golf Documentary van CNN. Met de jonge Lucy die zich voorbereidt op de Olympische Zomerspelen 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazilië.