Under Red Skies – Inside the Minds of Chinese Millennials

Karoline Kan is a second child born among the one-child generation in 1989. In order to give birth to her, her mother hid from local officials for almost ten months. But the challenges didn’t end there — to her paternal grandparents, she was an unwanted girl, an idea that shadowed her whole childhood.


Yet she was also a lucky girl with a strong mother who pushed the family out of a remote Chinese village and completely changed Karoline’s life by providing her with the best education she could. In her late twenties, Karoline, a girl with a humble background, became an author and international journalist for The New York Times.

Recently, she published Under Red Skies, widely touted as the first English-language memoir written by a Chinese millennial.

We were honored to interview her this past weekend at the Yenching Global Symposium hosted by the Yenching Academy of Peking University. On this live episode, Karoline talks about the millennial generation in China and foreign media’s coverage of this group. She also talks about how numerous historical incidents have impacted her and her generation and shaped who they are today.