Xiaowei Wang's essay collection has been chosen by the National Book Foundation (NBF) and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation as a 2023 Science + Literature selected title. The initiative identifies three books annually that deepen readers’ understanding of science and technology and focuses on highlighting the diversity of voices in contemporary science and technology writing. Authors receive a $10,000 cash prize, are celebrated at a ceremony in March, and will be featured in associated national public programming.
In Blockchain Chicken Farm: And Other Stories of Tech in China’s Countryside, Xiaowei Wang examines the intersection of politics, agriculture, and technology in China’s rural revitalization strategy. Wang shares case studies and personal stories—including their own family’s—to portray the knowns and unknowns of a rapidly changing world influenced by artificial intelligence and power.
“Amidst the growing demand to better understand the social implications of digital technology, Blockchain Chicken Farm stands out as a culturally sensitive and original contribution. Xiaowei Wang offers a rare and enlightened window into the globalization of rural China and deftly explores how the applied science of modern machinery, of artificial intelligence, is deeply intertwined with people, places, and politics. Each essay in this plucky collection asks urgent questions about our humanity and communal future, shaped now by the rapid rise of tech in seemingly unlikely places.”