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Jennifer Zeng
Born October 19, 1966(1966-10-19)
Sichuan, China
Residence Sydney, Australia
Nationality Chinese
Alma mater Peking University
Occupation Author, Activist

Jennifer Zeng (born October 19, 1966) is a Chinese-born human rights activist and author, best known for her involvement in Falun Gong and her book Witnessing History: One Chinese Woman's Fight for Freedom and Falun Gong.


Early life and education

She was born in Sichuan province, which she later left to attend Peking University, where she earned a master of science degree in biochemistry.

Falun Gong

She became a practitioner of Falun Gong in 1997. Later, when the government of the People's Republic of China began to arrest people involved with the group, she was among them. She was in fact arrested four times, and sent to a labor camp, the Beijing Municipal Women's Re-Education-Through-Labor Camp,[1] for rehabilitation. Zeng relates that at the camp she was physically and mentally abused, subject to attempted brainwashing and even faced electroshock treatment.[2] She has also stated that while at the camp, on those days when there were visitors, she and the other detainees were forced to play cards or play basketball for the visitors to see.[1]

Asylum and Activism

In 2001, she fled to Australia, and now lives in Sydney as a refugee.[1] Her daughter later followed her there for her own safety. Since arriving in Australia, she has spoken out about the Australian government's lack of protection of practitioners there, alleging that the government does not wish to insult or anger China. A specific instance which she recounted to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation involves how an official of the Chinese government once walked out of the Chinese embassy in Canberra and slapped a female Falun Gong practitioner on the face. The women responded that, in Australia, she had the right to be there and to continue practicing Falun Gong. The official responded saying that he was a Chinese diplomat. As such, no one particularly cared what he did, because Australia could not do much to him.[2]

She published her book Witnessing History in 2005. The book describes the difficulties she has faced in practicing Falun Gong in China, and even since she left China. The book has been described by a reviewer in the Midwest Book Review as "a necessarily harsh assault on a nation that does not respect human rights",[3] and by June Sawyers in Booklist as "an often harrowing, powerful reminder of what can happen when government power runs unchecked".[2]


  1. ^ a b c Shar Adams, "Beijing Labor Camp Tour Will Be Fake Warns Victim", The Epoch Times, August 17, 2008,
  2. ^ a b c Contemporary Authors Online, Gale, 2009. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich: Gale, 2009.
  3. ^ January 2008 Review Witnessing History Midwest Book Review 3, Number 1

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