Film Screening and Discussion: The Revolutionary


Sidney Rittenberg arrived in China as a GI Chinese language expert at the end of World War II. He stayed in China, joined the Chinese Commnist Party, and was an active participant in the Communist Revolution and its aftermath. An intimate of the Party's leadership, including Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai, he gained prominence at the Broadcast Administration, one of the most important agencies of government. But in the convulsions of a giant country constantly reinventing itself, he twice ran afoul of China's rulers, and served a total of 16 years in solitary confinement. The Revolutionary tells his extraordinary story. 


Irv Drasnin is co-producer, writer, interviewer, and narrator of The Revolutionary. Drasnin spent 35 years at CBS News and PBS, and has made 31 documentary films.

Sidney Rittenberg (joining via Skype) was the first American citizen admitted to the Chinese Communist Party and has known every Chinese leader since Mao. Rittenberg, whose Chinese name is Li Dunbai, lived in China for 35 years and returned to the U.S. in 1980. 

For more on The Revolutionary, visit

Promotional Co-Sponsors: UC Berkeley Center for Chinese Studies, California Film Institute, Eastwind Books of Berkeley, UC Berkeley Institute for East Asia Studies, USF Center for the Pacific Rim

Program Agenda:

6:30 - 7:00 pm: Registration
7:00 - 8:30 pm: Film Screening
8:30 - 9:00 pm: Q&A with Irv Drasnin and Sidney Rittenberg

Event Details

Mon 07 Oct 2013
7 - 9 p.m.
Pacific Film Archive Theater 2575 Bancroft Way Berkeley, CA
Buy Tickets
$10 Asia Society/Co-Sponsor Members; $15 Non-Members; Students FREE
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