Beida accuses student marxists of criminal activity

Source: Sup China (11/15/18)
Peking University accuses student Marxists of criminal activity

After the apparent kidnapping of two students, the campaign to crush Marxist activist organizations at Peking University (PKU) and other prestigious schools is not slowing down. Click here for a recap of the story so far. The latest:

  • “The Peking University committee of China’s ruling Communist Party declared the establishment of an ‘internal control and management’ office to enforce discipline on campus, including day-to-day inspections and patrols on school grounds,” according to CNN.
  • PKU authorities also “sent a message to all students on Wednesday, November 14, accusing Marxist activists of ‘criminal activity,’ and warning that ‘if there are still students that want to defy the law, they must take responsibility,’” according to Agence France-Presse.
  • There is a petition demanding the release of detained students and workers:Demand the release of kidnapped students and workers in China.

—Jeremy Goldkorn

Police detain more labour activists

Source: Hong Kong Free Press (11/14/18)
Chinese police detain more labour activists, group says
By Pak Yiu

Jasic Technology support groups

Jasic Technology support groups from Peking University and other colleges pose for a group photo in Shenzhen, southeastern China’s Guangdong province, Aug. 21, 2018.

Chinese police have detained three more labour rights supporters, an activist group said, in a crackdown on a workers movement that drew in leftist students fired by an official call to return to Marxism.

The Jasic Workers Solidarity group said police in the central city of Wuhan “violently arrested” three of its members on Sunday, with one of them pinned to the ground by at least three officers.

That follows Friday’s police raids on the homes of at least 10 activists who were detained in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, including students from some of China’s top universities, the group had said earlier. Continue reading

MMA fighter takes on grandmasters of kung fu

Source: Time (11/8/18)
Meet the Chinese MMA Fighter Taking on the Grandmasters of Kung Fu

Fighters aren’t usually the blushing type. But Xu Xiaodong can’t hide his embarrassment when asked about his latest battle scar, a three-inch crimson railroad track that snakes over his right eyebrow. It was caused, he says, by an overzealous opponent’s knee at a recent training session, during which Xu grappled with four younger mixed-martial-arts (MMA) fighters in quick succession. “I was tired by the end and bam!” Xu tells TIME in his Beijing gym. “Twenty-six stitches!”

It’s by far the most obvious of the 40-year-old’s war wounds, eclipsing even cauliflower ears and a catalog of creaking bones. But it’s nowhere near the deepest. Xu has spent a lifetime fighting, first at school and later channeling a red-hot adolescent temper into competitive MMA. But the fiercest blows he suffered were far from the ring, when he took on practitioners of traditional Chinese martial arts, known officially as wushu but more colloquially as simply kung fu. Continue reading

Social credit overview

Source: China Law Translate (10/31/18)
Social Credit Overview Podcast

Sorry for the sound quality, it’s just me with a laptop and a baby sleeping in the other room.


Hi this is Jeremy Daum of China Law Translate and Yale Law School’s Paul Tsai China Center. If you’re listening to this you’ve probably seen an article or watched a show about China Social Credit System and chances are it also mentioned Orwell or Black Mirror somewhere in there. Continue reading

Sichuan’s Catholic past

Source: Sixth Tone (11/7/18)
On the Trail of Sichuan’s Catholic Past
The remote southwestern province is home to some of China’s oldest and most well-preserved Catholic churches.
By Ma Te

Sacred Heart Cathedral in Dechang County, Sichuan province, Feb. 9, 2018. Courtesy of Ma Te.

The southwestern province of Sichuan is situated in one of China’s most culturally, ethnically, and religiously diverse regions. Home to members of the Han, Tibetan, Hui, and Yi ethnic groups, among others, travelers to the area can find centuries-old Tibetan and Taoist temples standing alongside mosques and churches.

Of the various faiths practiced in Sichuan, Christianity stands out as a relative latecomer. The first Catholic missionary known to have reached the province was an Italian Jesuit named Lodovico Buglio, who spent much of the 1640s proselytizing there. Eventually, in 1753, the Paris Foreign Missions Society, a Catholic lay organization, took over responsibility for the Catholic missionary presence in Sichuan. By 1804, there was a small but growing community of Sichuanese Catholics, including 18 Chinese priests and four French missionaries. Continue reading

Internet is freaking out over a 5-year-old’s resume

Source: SupChina (10/31/18)
The Chinese Internet Is Freaking Out Over A Five-Year-Old’s Résumé
By Jiayun Feng

Full-fledged adults should stop whining about how arduous it is to write a decent résumé, because this five-year-old kid in China has just mastered the art of self-aggrandizing.

Today, an extensive résumé (in Chinese) by an anonymous kindergarten kid became the hottest topic on Chinese social media. Coming in the form of a 15-page PDF document, the résumé gives an incredibly comprehensive overview of the child’s awe-inspiring history.

Continue reading

Interview with Xu Youyu

Yaxue Cao has published an interesting interview with Xu Youyu in which he reminisces about the character development of Liu Xiaobo, the role of intellectuals during times of ferment, and Professor Xu’s own experiences of detention and interrogation.  Looking forward, he comments, “I don’t think that the fascist forces and tendencies in China have reached their extreme yet. The worst is yet to come.”–A. E. Clark <>

Source: China Change (10/31/18)
An Interview With Xu Youyu: ‘The Worst Is Yet to Come’

This is part of China Change’s new interview series that seeks to understand the effort of civil society in bringing change to China over the past 30 years. The interview was conducted in June 2018 by Yaxue Cao, editor of this website, at Professor Xu Youyu’s home in Flushing, New York City. — The Editors

Xu Youyu, screenshot photo

Photo, Xu Youyu, China Change

Yaxue Cao (YC): Professor Xu, would you mind first introducing yourself to our readers?

Xu Youyu (XY): My name is Xu Youyu (徐友渔); I was born in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, in 1947. I was in the graduating class at the Chengdu No. 1 Secondary School in 1966 when the Cultural Revolution erupted — right when I was enrolling for the national college entrance examination. Later, I got deeply wrapped up in the Cultural Revolution and became a leader of a mass organization, and as a result I gained a great deal of understanding of what it was all about. This has put me at an extraordinary advantage for studying the Cultural Revolution period in my scholarship now. I was one of the first new entrants to university in 1977 when matriculation resumed. But I’d only studied undergraduate for a little over a semester when, unprecedentedly, I was recommended to take the graduate exams. I transferred to the China Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing in 1979 to become a grad student, and worked at CASS from then on until my retirement. During that period, in 1986, I studied at Oxford for a couple of years. I retired in 2008. Continue reading

Same-sex marriage vote in Taiwan nears

Source: NYT (10/27/18)
Taiwan’s Gay Pride Parade Draws Thousands, as Votes on Same-Sex Marriage Near
阅读简体中文版 | 閱讀繁體中文版
By Chris Horton

The annual gay pride parade in Taipei, Taiwan, is the biggest event of its kind in East Asia. Organizers said about 137,000 people showed up on Saturday.CreditCreditAshley Pon for The New York Times

TAIPEI, Taiwan — A year ago, participants in Taipei’s annual gay pride parade — the biggest event of its kind in East Asia — had a lot to celebrate.

Taiwan’s constitutional court had given the government until May 2019 to legalize same-sex marriage, ruling that the civil code’s definition of marriage as being between a man and a woman was unconstitutional. If the government didn’t meet the deadline, the court said, same-sex marriage would simply become legal automatically.

That deadline is now barely half a year away. But the democratic island will hold referendums on same-sex marriage on Nov. 24, and many of the estimated 137,000 marchers at the pride parade on Saturday expressed both frustration at the lack of progress and cautious optimism for their cause. Continue reading

Role of Han civilians in Xinjiang repression (1)

Thanks for bringing it up, I was also just thinking, this needs posting! I think Darren Byler’s excellent piece is important, and has gotten a lot of praise. And actually, Darren Byler has written previously on the forced cultural assimilation campaign in Xinjiang, on his excellent blog:

And, here is yesterday’s 5 min. radio interview with Byler, on this same topic:

How do we talk about these things? Words like “paternalistic”, “patronizing”, “intrusive,” etc. do not seem to be enough to capture the revolting we-know-best attitude that animates these Chinese settler-colonist home-spies as they carry out their sorting of which families to break up, which children will lose their parents and go to brainwashing school, and so on. In Sweden we use the German word Besserwisser, but, it usually refers to an eccentric who’s annoying but not really consequential. It can’t quite capture Chinese Communist agents who put you behind barbed wire for being who you are. I don’t know what words would suffice to describe this campaign. Continue reading

Role of Han civilians in Xinjiang repression

May I recommend, in the most earnest terms, a ChinaFile essay by Darren Byler:

Considering what is described, this is a remarkably restrained and objective report.  Like some great novels, it adopts the perspective of a narrator with limited awareness: the Han Chinese who have been dispatched to live in Uyghur homes, probe families’ loyalty to the state, and recommend who should be sent to the camps. It affected my understanding of and feeling for the events in Xinjiang more than anything else I have read.

A. E. Clark

Falling stars

Source: SCMP (10/18/18)
Chinese millennials ‘falling out of cars’ in search of internet fame
‘Falling stars’ challenge attracts Chinese millennials hoping to go viral and a mocking response from more down-to-earth citizens
By Zoe Low

The latest viral “falling stars” internet challenge among China’s “crazy rich Asians” has been mocked by a series of satirical memes, this one from a Shanghai firefighter. 

Two Chinese women stopped their car on a pedestrian crossing in a busy city centre and, as they got out, one of them dropped her Gucci handbag, a pair of red-soled, high-heeled shoes, and an assortment of make-up on the street, spreading them around for effect.

She then lay face down, with her legs still inside the car, as her friend began to shoot video of her “fall”.

That was on Monday. On Wednesday, according to the Taizhou internet police force, the women, both surnamed Chen, were arrested for disrupting traffic and fined 150 yuan (US$21) and 10 yuan. Continue reading

Chinese Parents online game

Source: Sixth Tone (10/16/18)
Chinese Gamers Can Now Walk a Mile in Their Parents’ Shoes
Being a responsible guardian is the goal of China’s latest online gaming fad.
By Yin Yijun

A screenshot from ‘Chinese Parents’ shows a couple attending to their pregnant daughter at the hospital.

Hoping to raise smart, happy, successful kids someday? A little online tiger mom training couldn’t hurt.

Since its release just before October’s Golden Week holiday, “Chinese Parents” peaked at No. 2 on gaming platform Steam’s bestselling title list, temporarily outperforming big-budget competitors like “PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.” Developed by Beijing-based studio Moyuwan, the game gives players the chance to have virtual baby boys, raise them to adulthood, and see that they find good careers and partners. (The option to have girls is still being developed.) Continue reading

The Rise of Wolf Culture

Source: ACAS: Association for Chinese Animation Studies (10/16/18)
The Rise of Wolf Culture: Thoughts on Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf
By Jianhua Chen; translated by Isabel Galwey

The first ten years of the twenty-first century have passed in a snap of the fingers. Many trends have come and gone, but nothing has prevented the onward march of the globalized economy. The world, the globe, and our everyday lives are undergoing historic changes — and so are our value systems. People live as if in constant movement; danger accompanies opportunity.  People have become more materialistic, more impatient, and more fragile. Under all this pressure, they seek relaxation and pleasure. This era has been described as the “digital age,” the “information age,” but also the “the age of entertainment.”[i]

Half a century ago French Philosopher Guy Debord posited his theory of the “society of spectacle:” that the urban environment brought about by capitalism is coloured by its alienated, fetishistic ideologies — and citizens unconsciously live in accordance with its capitalistic logic. Now, new digital technology and internet culture have brought about a new world of mass media, stranger even than the “spectacular society.” Nobody is interested in “ideology” anymore. The intelligentsia of the 20th century were at the forefront of ideological movements, but in an age dominated by mass media, these intellectuals are powerless. Ideology itself, however, has not been absent. Rather, it has remained in the background of everyday entertainment. Ideology is transmitted though the globalised circulation of cultural products and aesthetics. Our essential values — what is “truth” and what is “good and evil”— are undergoing unprecedented and dramatic changes. Continue reading

TV ad against effeminate men backfires

Source: SupChina (10/11/18)
TV Ad Against Effeminate Men Backfires
By Jiayun Feng

Yesterday, Anhui TV released a video ad for its new reality show, The Journey of Youth (青春的征途 qīngchūn de zhēngtú), where six teenagers born after 1995 travel around the country and complete mental and physical challenges. In the clip, the six participants, four boys and two girls, take turns to introduce themselves. At the end of each one’s segment, the teen says, “I’m from the post-’95 generation and I object to niangpao (娘炮 niángpào).”

Niangpao is a derogatory term for effeminate men. Watch the ad below: Continue reading

The case of Jane Doe Ponytail

The tragic story of a Liaoning woman’s immigration to the US, the sex trade, and her death.–Kirk

Source: NYT (10/12/18)
The Case of Jane Doe Ponytail
阅读简体中文版 | 閱讀繁體中文版

“Feeling depressed for a long time,” Song Yang, known on 40th Road as SiSi, posted. “Coming out to bask in the sunshine.”

A WOMAN BEGINS TO FALL. With her long dark hair in a ponytail and her black-and-red scarf loose around her neck, she is plummeting from a fourth-floor balcony, through the neon-charged November night.

Below awaits 40th Road, a gritty street of commerce in the Flushing section of Queens. Chinese restaurants and narrow storefronts, and dim stairwells leading to private transactions. Strivers and dawdlers and passers-by, all oblivious to what is transpiring above.

But before the pavement ends the woman’s descent, a few feet from a restaurant’s glittering Christmas tree, imagine her fall suddenly suspended — her body freeze-framed in midair. If only for a moment. Continue reading