Romance and Revolution: Group Discussions

  • Rowena Xiaoqing He
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Oral History book series (PSOH)


I held two group discussions in New York City with the three participants—one with Shen Tong and Danxuan, and the other with Wang Dan and Danxuan. The group discussions were extensions of and reflections on the individual interviews that I had conducted. In this sense, the participants not only contributed to their own individual biographical profiles, but also to the discussion of broad themes that informed the entire process. Both Wang Dan and Danxuan seemed to be more relaxed and comfortable in the group discussions than during individual interviews—they were more engaged and motivated to contribute their thoughts in a group setting. I didn’t see this difference in Shen Tong—he was as expressive during the meeting as he had been in the interview. I have identified each speaker in front the direct quotes so that readers will not be confused: DX for Danxuan, ST for Shen Tong, WD for Wang Dan, and RH, of course, for myself. In the discussions, they all referred to me as “Xiaoqing,” my Chinese name.


Group Discussion Individual Interview Chinese Student Dissident Group Student Leader 
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© Rowena Xiaoqing He 2014

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  • Rowena Xiaoqing He

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