Changpian 18

长篇 // Changpian // Longform

Welcome to the 18th edition of Changpian, a selection of feature and opinion writing in Chinese. With other resources devoted to the many interesting sound bites from Chinese social media, this newsletter focuses instead on some of the wealth of longer writing that is produced in Chinese, both in traditional news media and on platforms like WeChat.

Changpian includes any nonfiction writing, from stories and investigations to interviews and blog posts, that I found worth my time – and that you might like as well. It aims to be relevant to an understanding of Chinese society today, covering topics in and outside the news cycle.

The selection is put together by me, Tabitha Speelman, a Dutch journalist and researcher currently based in Leiden, The Netherlands. Feedback is very welcome ( or @tabithaspeelman). Back issues can be found here.

I’m glad to finally get to a new issue. Changpian doesn’t really have an events section but for non-fiction fans in Beijing: a 非虚构创作者大会 coming Friday might be of interest. And if you’re looking for a place to read in the capital — non-profit 鸿芷’s coffee shop in 银河SOHO is closing, but still there until May 20. Continue reading

Cross-Currents 26

New China-Related Content: Cross-Currents: East Asian History and Culture Review (March 2018 online issue): March 2018 e-Journal (No. 26)

Co-editors’ Note to Readers


Imagining China’s Children: Lower-Elementary Reading Primers and the Reconstruction of Chinese Childhood, 1945–1951
Carl Kubler, University of Chicago

Japanese Modernism at a “Branch Point”: On the Museum of Modern Art, Hayama’s 1937 Exhibition
Kevin Michael Smith, University of California, Davis

Review Essays

Transcultural, Resistant, Everyday: New Photographic Histories of China and Japan
Shana J. Brown, University of Hawai‘i, Mānoa
Luke Gartlan and Roberta Wue, eds. Portraiture and Early Studio Photography in China and Japan. New York: Routledge, 2017.
David Odo. The Journey of “A Good Type”: From Artistry to Ethnography in Early Japanese Studies. Cambridge, MA: Peabody Museum Press, Harvard University, 2015.
Kerry Ross. Photography for Everyone: The Cultural Lives of Cameras and Consumers in Early Twentieth-Century Japan. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2015. Continue reading

Chinese Heritage in the Making

Chinese Heritage in the Making
Experiences, Negotiations and Contestations
Edited by Christina Maags and Marina Svensson
ToC and Introduction

The Chinese state uses cultural heritage as a source of power by linking it to political and economic goals, but heritage discourse has at the same time encouraged new actors to appropriate the discourse to protect their own traditions. This book focuses on that contested nature of heritage, especially through the lens of individuals, local communities, religious groups, and heritage experts. It examines the effect of the internet on heritage-isation, as well as how that process affects different groups of people. Continue reading

Bulletin of the Institute of Modern History no. 98

Bulletin of the Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, no. 98

The latest issue of Bulletin of the Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, Vol. 98 is now available online at:



The Pride of Public Spittoons? Anti-Spitting Movements in Hong Kong, New York, and Shanghai
By Sean Hsiang-lin Lei

The Transition of North China’s Rural Leadership in the Twentieth Century: An Oral History Investigation
By Chen Yao-huang

A Puppet Organization in Occupied East China during the Early Period of the Anti-Japanese War: A Study of the Zhenjiang Branch of the Daminhui
By Liu Jie Continue reading

Made in China Yearbook 2017

Dear Colleagues,

I am happy to announce the release of the Made in China Yearbook 2017: Gilded Age, published open access by ANU Press.

According to the Chinese zodiac, 2017 was the year of the ‘fire rooster’, an animal often associated with the mythical fenghuang, a magnificently beautiful bird whose appearance is believed to mark the beginning of a new era of peaceful flourishing. Considering the auspicious symbolism surrounding the fenghuang, it is fitting that on 18 October 2017, President Xi Jinping took to the stage of the Nineteenth Party Congress to proclaim the beginning of a ‘new era’ for Chinese socialism. However, in spite of such ecumenical proclamations, it became immediately evident that not all in China would be welcome to reap the rewards promised by the authorities. Migrant workers, for one, remain disposable. Lawyers, activists, and even ordinary citizens who dare to express critical views also hardly find a place in Xi’s brave new world. This Yearbook traces the stark new ‘gilded age’ inaugurated by the Chinese Communist Party. It does so through a collection of more than forty original essays on labour, civil society, and human rights in China and beyond penned by leading scholars and practitioners from around the world.

To download the electronic version of the book FOR FREE, please click on this link. More exciting news related to our Made in China project will follow soon.

Ivan Franceschini (

Texts and Transformations

Cambria Press is proud to announce the new book  Texts and Transformations: Essays in Honor of the 75th Birthday of Victor H. Mair edited by Haun Saussy (University of Chicago). Contributors are Mark Bender, Nicola Di Cosmo, Phyllis Granoff, Wilt L. Idema, Mabel Lee, Perry Link, Tansen Sen, Koichi Shinohara, Jerome Silbergeld, Tanya Storch,  Emma J. Teng, David Der-wei Wang, Ellen Widmer, and Mimi Yiengpruksawan.

From the introduction by Haun Saussy: “Although fluent in such genres as translation, annotation, didactic expansion, stylistic appreciation, ingenious allegory, identification of common threads, life and works, intercultural comparison, and reframing, Victor Mair has always been drawn to the mystery genre. In even the best-settled accounts of literature and culture, something requires explanation. With his roving attention and boundless curiosity, Victor Mair keeps Chinese studies on the move. The essays of this book—with their breadth of concern, their carefully documented scholarship, and the boldness of some of their conclusions—is a fitting homage to Victor Mair, whose readers, students, and colleagues have long recognized the same qualities in him.” Continue reading

Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts

Special Issue “Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts”
Journal of Folklore Research 55.1 Special Issue

A special issue of the Journal of Folklore Research entitled “Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts” is now available! Articles in the issue look at ways in which particular areas of cultural production, such as CD albums, singing competitions, representative works, and textual anthologies, come to serve as discursive spaces where individuals engage with and redefine larger traditions and themselves. Below, please find the table of contents and see the link for more information:

Volume 55, Number 1, January-April 2018


“Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts,” by Levi S. Gibbs, pp. 1-19 Continue reading

New Cambria publications

Cambria Press is pleased to announce the publication of Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics edited by Mabel Lee and Liu Jianmei. This volume brings readers up to date on the many works of Gao Xingjian. By looking at the extensive reach of Gao Xingjian’s transcultural, transdisciplinary, and transmedia explorations, this book provides readers with a panoramic examination of Gao’s works as playwright, novelist, poet, painter, and philosopher. Continue reading


If you are attending the AAS conference in DC this week, please stop by the Routledge booth (#503) during work hours to grab a free copy of the latest Chinese Literature Today (CLT) issues.

Routledge is also granting everyone free access to the full contents of our latest issue (CLT 6.2) between March 19 through April as an amenity for the AAS. Whether you are attending the AAS or not, you can view or download the contents of CLT 6.2, including the special sections on Wang Anyi, Dong Xi, and Wolfgang Kubin.

* CLT is a biannual magazine edited at the University of Oklahoma and published by Routledge. If you are interested in contributing an essay, a translation, an interview, or a special section on a contemporary Chinese author of your choice in CLT, please contact Ping Zhu, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of CLT, at

Chinese Metacinema

I am happy to announce the publication of my book, Metacinema in Contemporary Chinese Film. The book will be on display at the upcoming SCMS (with the North American distributor, Columbia UP) and AAS conferences. See information below.

Andrew Stuckey <>

“Stuckey surveys a broad swath of contemporary Chinese cinema, from popular blockbusters to elite art films, around the theme of metacinema, yielding new insights into both previously neglected films and those already acknowledged as contemporary classics. The result is a fascinating dive into the growing and diversifying cinema culture of China today.” —Jason McGrath, University of Minnesota

“Stuckey’s brilliant work, Metacinema in Contemporary Chinese Film, offers insightful close analyses of films by key directors from the PRC (Jiang Wen, Lou Ye, Jia Zhangke, and Li Yu), Hong Kong (Peter Chan), and Taiwan (Tsai Mingliang). This clearly written book is essential reading for scholars and students of Chinese cinemas. Stuckey’s study of genre and metacinema makes it a must-read for anyone interested in cinema.” —Michelle Bloom, University of California, Riverside Continue reading

Mabel Lee lecture

Professor Mabel Lee, Distinguished Professor in the “Chinese Culture in a World Context” research project at the Open University of Hong Kong, will be giving a lecture “Transcending Cultural Traditions: Lu Xun and Gao Xingjian” on March 19 (Monday) at 2:30 p.m. at the OUHK Main Campus in the B0614, 6/F. Professor Lee is best known for her translations of Nobel Laureate of Literature Gao Xingjian’s writings and as coeditor of The University of Sydney East Asian Series (1986–2000). There will also be a double launch of Professor Lee’s latest books, Painting History: China’s Revolution in a Global Context by Shen Jiawei and Gao Xingjian and Transmedia Aesthetics (coedited with Liu Jianmei, HKUST). The two books have just been published and will also be launched at the Cambria booth at the AAS 2018 conference in Washington, DC.

Ben Goodman <>

Animal Writing in Taiwan Literature

Taiwan Literature: English Translation Series, Issue Number 41: Special Issue on “Animal Writing in Taiwan Literature” is available now. See the link for more information. Please also see the table of contents below.

Taiwan Literature: English Translation Series
Issue Number 41, January, 2018
ISBN: 978-986-350-262-3
GPN: 1010700001

Publisher: US-Taiwan Literature Foundation & National Taiwan University Press

台灣文學英譯叢刊(No. 41): 台灣文學的動物書寫專輯

Kuo-ch’ing Tu (杜國清)、 Terence Russell(羅德仁) 編
Chia-ju Chang (張嘉如), Guest-Editor (客座編輯)

Table of Contents:

Foreword to the Special Issue on Animal Writing in Taiwan Literature/Kuo-ch’ing Tu
「台灣文學的動物書寫專輯」卷頭語/杜國清 Continue reading

International Journal of Taiwan Studies 1.1

The inaugural issue of International Journal of Taiwan Studies is now available! Below, please find the table of contents and see the link for more information:

International Journal of Taiwan Studies
Volume 1, Issue 1, 2018
ISSN: 2468-8797
E-ISSN: 2468-8800


“Editorial,” by Ming-yeh T. Rawnsley, pp.: 1–3

“Introduction: The State of the Field of Taiwan Studies,” by Hsin-Huang Michael Hsiao and Dafydd Fell, pp.: 5–10 Continue reading

Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics

NEW! NOW PUBLISHED IN OPEN ACCESS. For the years 2018-2020 all articles in Bulletin of Chinese Linguistics are published as full open access articles. There are no submission charges and no Article Processing Charges as these are fully funded by institutions through Knowledge Unlatched, resulting in no direct charge to authors.

See all volumes and articles here:

Best wishes,

Victoria G. Menson
Assistant Editor, Asian Studies and Languages; Linguistics