A young man stands grinning in Beijing's Forbidden City. It's the dead of winter, and one of his hands is buried deep into the pockets of his long overcoat to protect it from the chill. The other grasps the unmistakable contours of a glass Coca-Cola bottle.

Today, Coke is the world's most famous soft drink and can be found just about anywhere. But back in 1981, when the image was shot by Pulitzer-Prize winning photographer Liu Heung Shing, it was only just getting into the hands of ordinary Chinese people.

A version of this story appeared in CNN's Meanwhile in China newsletter, a three-times-a-week update exploring what you need to know about the country's rise and how it impacts the world. Sign up here.

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