Leslie T. Chang has written about women in the developing world for two decades. Her book Factory Girls: From Village to City in a Changing China (Spiegel & Grau, 2008) traces the lives of two young women from the countryside who work in a factory city in southern China. Factory Girls was named a New York Times Notable Book and has been translated into 10 languages. Chang is a recipient of the PEN USA Literary Award, the Asian American Literary Award, the Tiziano Terzani International Literary Prize, the Quality Paperback Book Club New Visions Award, and the Alicia Patterson Foundation Fellowship.

From 2011 to 2016, Chang lived in Cairo, Egypt. Her book about the working women of Egypt will be published next year.

Prior to that, Chang lived in China for a decade as a correspondent for The Wall Street Journal. She has also written for The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, and National Geographic. A graduate of Harvard University with a degree in American History and Literature, Chang has also worked as a journalist in the Czech Republic, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

She and her husband, writer Peter Hessler, live in southwestern Colorado with their twin daughters.

Last Updated: September 22, 2022

Little Town on the Prairie

Leslie T. Chang from New York Review of Books
Liang Village sits on the edge of the North China Plain, about 650 miles south of Beijing. The area was settled by migrants who came in waves throughout Chinese history, attracted by the fertile soil in what was traditionally one of the country’s...



For Many in China, the One Child Policy is Already Irrelevant

Leslie T. Chang
Before getting pregnant with her second child, Lu Qingmin went to the family-planning office to apply for a birth permit. Officials in her husband’s Hunan village where she was living turned her down, but she had the baby anyway. She may eventually...

Recommended Links


n the ongoing debate about globalization, what's been missing is the voices of workers -- the millions of people who migrate to factories in China and other emerging countries to make goods sold all over the world. Reporter Leslie T. Chang sought out women who work in one of China's booming megacities, and tells their stories.