"Call me Mr. Zhang" A Historical Fiction Short Story

dc.contributorHarwell, Debbie
dc.contributor.authorTello, Andres
dc.description.abstractMy Mellon Research project is a historical fiction short story. Set in Houston in 1988, the story sees a man from China, Mr. Zhang, recall his incredible life story to American college student, Thomas Brown. Mr. Zhang's story touches on his escape from the persecution of Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution, his grueling swim across Shenzhen Bay to escape to freedom in Hong Kong, and why, fifteen years later, he has chosen to emigrate to Houston. The story touches on themes of cultural changes, societal upheaval, ideological persecution, perseverance, language learning, repatriation, freedom swimmers, and the push and pull factors of immigration. To write a convincing work of historical fiction I needed to ground my story in rigorous research to make it plausible within the context of historical reality. In fact, the process of researching historical fiction proved similar to researching an academic project by asking key questions. For example, my methodology involved posing and answering questions about the lives of regular people in the story's given time and place. The answers came from research in primary and secondary sources, including books, scholarly articles, newspaper clippings, oral histories, Houston History Magazine, archival materials at the Houston Metropolitan Research Center, University of Pittsburg's China's Cultural Revolution in Memories project, and numerous videos.
dc.description.departmentHonors College
dc.description.departmentHistory, Department of
dc.relation.ispartofMellon Research Scholars Program
dc.rightsThe author of this work is the copyright owner. UH Libraries and the Texas Digital Library have their permission to store and provide access to this work. Further transmission, reproduction, or presentation of this work is prohibited except with permission of the author(s).
dc.title"Call me Mr. Zhang" A Historical Fiction Short Story


Original bundle

Now showing 1 - 1 of 1
Thumbnail Image
3.05 MB
Adobe Portable Document Format