A Chinese Epidemic: Death from Overwork
As China’s economy grows and its professional culture becomes increasingly cut-throat, there has been a rise in guolaosi, the Chinese term for ‘death from overwork.’ In fact, 600,000 cases were tallied last year by the government-run China Youth Daily; that’s at a rate of 1,600 a day.
A report from Bloomberg recounted the story of Li Jianhua, a 48 year-old banking regulator who was found dead at his desk on April 23 after working through the early morning hours, finishing a report for the following day. Born in the coal town Baotou in Inner Mongolia, his life was an act of devotion to both job and country. He was among the first to enroll in university after the Cultural Revolution, and, after joining the party in 1985, began working for the government in banking regulation.
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