Bold Experiment

China's visiting capitalists

For China-bound travelers in decades past, the first glimpse of the People's Republic was often the sleepy border town of Shumchun, a short walk across a bridge from the British colony of Hong Kong. Visitors sensed immediately that they were in another country, a world apart from the bustle of capitalist Hong Kong. Men and women in baggy pants moved at quarter-speed in a changeless setting of rural stupor.

No longer. Shenzhen (the new spelling under the Pinyin system) is now a vast building site. Construction crews stir dust as they dig sewers, build roads and prepare foundations for factories...

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