CCP slogans for 2021

Source: China Media Project (4/14/21)

CCP Slogans for 2021

The site of the First National Congress of the Communist Party of China. Image available at Wikimedia Commons under CC license.

In a report yesterday, CMP noted the release by the Central Office of the CCP of a propaganda blueprint for the promotion of the 100th anniversary of the Party this year. The “Notice,” which was reported on the front page of the People’s Daily, defines the key propaganda themes that will likely dominate the Chinese media in 2021.

Along with the CCP notice, propaganda authorities released a list of 80 propaganda slogans to be used in this year’s campaign. Such a top-down national release of propaganda slogans was unprecedented in the reform era before 2019, when a list of 70 propaganda slogans was issued for the 70th anniversary of the PRC.

Below is our brief analysis of six key points gleaned from the list of 80 slogans. Continue reading

The People’s Map of Global China

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

We are happy to announce a new initiative stemming from the Made in China Journal: The People’s Map of Global China.

Using an interactive, open access, and online ‘map’ format, we are collaborating with nongovernmental organisations, journalists, trade unions, academics, and the public at large to provide updated and updatable information on various dimensions of Global China in their localities.

The Map consists of profiles of countries and projects, sortable by project parameters, Chinese companies and banks involved, and their social, political, and environmental impacts.

This is a ‘people’s’ map in two ways. First, our content attempts to trace the global imprint of China focusing on the experiences of the people most affected by it. For this reason, you will discover that our profiles have a strong focus on issues related to labour rights, environment, land, Indigenous communities, etc. Second, our map relies on the input of a growing network of people who often hail from the places they are discussing, who have been conducting in-depth research on the various facets of Global China in their localities, and/or are working directly with communities impacted by these projects.

Beside the map homepage, you might also want to check out our project database, country database, list of contributors, and FAQ page. We are currently launching with profiles for 17 countries and 23 projects, but the map will be updated on a rolling basis. Even though we already have much more content in the pipeline, we welcome new pitches and submissions. To keep track of our updates, you can follow us on our dedicated Facebook and Twitter profiles. Continue reading

China allows people to pay respects to Jiang Qing

Source: Radio Free Asia (4/7/21)
China Allows People to Pay Respects at Grave of Cultural Revolution Leader Jiang Qing
By Qiao Long

China Allows People to Pay Respects at Grave of Cultural Revolution Leader Jiang Qing

Picture dated 25 January 1981 in Beijing of Jiang Qing (1914-91), third wife of Mao Zedong during the trial of the “Gang of Four”, four Shanghai-based hard-core radical leaders of the Cultural Revolution (1966-76). AFP

The ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has allowed public access to the grave of Jiang Qing, former member of the Gang of Four and widow of late supreme leader Mao Zedong, ahead of its centenary on July 1.

“This was sent to me by a friend in mainland China, and I am forwarding it here,” former CCP Party School professor Cai Xia, who now lives in the United States, said via her Twitter account on April 5, the traditional grave-tending festival where people make long journeys to honor the dead.

She said the move was in contrast with the state security police detail that guarded the grave of late ousted premier Zhao Ziyang, who fell from power after opposing the use of military force against unarmed civilians in 1989.

“People aren’t allowed to pay their respects at Zhao Ziyang’s grave, and yet Jiang Qing’s grave is open to the public,” Cai wrote. “The CCP is afraid of whom the public might admire most.” Continue reading

Shows blur western brands over Xinjiang cotton dispute

Source: NYT (4/9/21)
Chinese Shows Blur Western Brands Over Xinjiang Cotton Dispute
Online platforms that stream dance, singing and comedy shows are pixelating performers’ T-shirts and sneakers amid a nationalistic fervor.
By Tiffany May

The sneakers of a contestant on the stand-up comedy series “Roast” were blurred. Credit…Tencent Video

HONG KONG — Viewers of some of China’s most popular online variety shows were recently greeted by a curious sight: a blur of pixels obscuring the brands on sneakers and T-shirts worn by contestants.

As far as viewers could tell, the censored apparel showed no hints of obscenity or indecency. Instead, the problem lay with the foreign brands that made them.

Since late March, streaming platforms in China have diligently censored the logos and symbols of brands like Adidas that adorn contestants performing dance, singing and standup-comedy routines. The phenomenon followed a feud between the government and big-name international companies that said they would avoid using cotton produced in the western Chinese region of Xinjiang, where the authorities are accused of mounting a wide-reaching campaign of repression against ethnic minorities, including Uyghurs. Continue reading

Countering Xinjiang backlash with a musical

Source: NYT (4/5/21)
China Tries to Counter Xinjiang Backlash With … a Musical?
The movie is part of Beijing’s wide-ranging new propaganda campaign to push back on sanctions and criticism of its oppression of the Uyghurs.
By Amy Qin

A Chinese government propaganda sign with slogans reading “Forever following the Party” and “China’s ethnicities, one family” in Aksu, Xinjiang, last month. Credit…Ng Han Guan/Associated Press

In one scene, Uyghur women are seen dancing in a rousing Bollywood style face-off with a group of Uyghur men. In another, a Kazakh man serenades a group of friends with a traditional two-stringed lute while sitting in a yurt.

Welcome to “The Wings of Songs,” a state-backed musical that is the latest addition to China’s propaganda campaign to defend its policies in Xinjiang. The campaign has intensified in recent weeks as Western politicians and rights groups have accused Beijing of subjecting Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in Xinjiang to forced labor and genocide.

The film, which debuted in Chinese cinemas last week, offers a glimpse of the alternate vision of Xinjiang that China’s ruling Communist Party is pushing to audiences at home and abroad. Far from being oppressed, the musical seems to say, the Uyghurs and other minorities are singing and dancing happily in colorful dress, a flashy take on a tired Chinese stereotype about the region’s minorities that Uyghur rights activists quickly denounced. Continue reading

HK court convict democracy leaders

Source: NYT (3/31/21)
Hong Kong Court Convicts Democracy Leaders Over Protest March
阅读简体中文版 | 閱讀繁體中文版
The defendants, including the media tycoon Jimmy Lai and the barristers Martin Lee and Margaret Ng, were some of the city’s most prominent activists.
By Austin Ramzy

Martin Lee, the 82-year-old barrister often called the “father of democracy” in Hong Kong, before the verdict on Thursday. Credit…Isaac Lawrence/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

HONG KONG — Seven of Hong Kong’s veteran pro-democracy leaders were found guilty on Thursday of unauthorized assembly, a verdict seen by their supporters as a severe assault on the freedom of speech and other civil liberties that once were core to the city’s identity.

Martin Lee, an 82-year-old barrister known as the “father of democracy” in Hong Kong; Jimmy Lai, 73, a media tycoon and founder of the staunchly pro-democracy Apple Daily newspaper; and Margaret Ng, 73, a respected barrister and columnist, along with four others, were convicted of participating in and organizing an unauthorized march in 2019.

They each face up to five years in prison, and sentences will be handed down on April 16. A severe penalty would be seen by critics of the government as an attempt to muzzle some of the most prominent and internationally recognized figures in Hong Kong’s democracy movement. It would also send a strong message about how the courts may rule in several other trials this year on similar charges of illegal assembly. Continue reading

Statement of support for targeted academics

Below a new statement in support of all the scholars sanctioned by China, circulating as of this morning March 30. This one is truly international — Please sign.–Magnus Fiskesjö,

Dear All:

Members of the academic and research community are invited to express their solidarity with colleagues affected by the Chinese government’s recent sanctions by signing this statement. For questions about this statement, please contact

Please consider signing – thank you.

Tawdry tale of local graft becomes a #MeToo moment

Source: NYT (3/29/21)
A Tawdry Tale of Local Graft Becomes a China #MeToo Moment
阅读简体中文版 | 閱讀繁體中文版<
A young woman from a modest background gets a long prison term. The powerful officials who paid her draw lighter punishment. The Chinese public has questions.
By Li Yuan

Credit… Jialun Deng

The woman from a poor village was only 19 years old when she started a sexual relationship with a local police chief. Soon, she had trysts with other local leaders, including police and hospital officials.

Some of the men gave her money. A lot of it. By the time the authorities caught her and charged her with extortion, Xu Yan had received $573,000 from nine men, including eight officials, according to court documents. In December, she was sentenced to 13 years in prison and ordered to pay the money back, plus $869,000 in fines.

That could have been the end of what seemed to be another tawdry tale of sex and corruption. But when people online learned the details, they began to ask questions.

Why did Ms. Xu get such a long sentence? How did all of the men but one avoid prison time? Where did public officials from such a poor place get so much money? And around such powerful men, can a teenager from such a destitute area really say no? Continue reading

Support for targeted academics

Many people are coming out in support of Newcastle University social anthropologist Jo Smith Finley who’s just been sanctioned by the Chinese regime for … doing her research, and for voicing her opinion, on the oppression of the Uyghurs in China.

Chinese Sanctions on Newcastle academic ‘counter-productive,” BBC NEWS (March 26, 2021).

China imposes sanctions on UK MPs, lawyers and academic in Xinjiang row.” The Guardian (March 26, 2021).

Her university officially tweeted their support for her, together with Universities UK, and the Russell Group, which represents 24 leading UK universities. ( … though they stopped short of outright condemning the Chinese government’s outrage). Continue reading

HK targets art deemed critical of China

Source: NYT (3/26/21)
‘Insult to the Country’: Hong Kong Targets Art Deemed Critical of China
Pro-Beijing lawmakers have called for work by the dissident artist Ai Weiwei to be removed from a new museum, and accused local arts groups of undermining national security.
By Vivian Wang

The M+ museum in Hong Kong is expected to open later this year, but it is already facing criticism from pro-Beijing lawmakers and newspapers for including works by dissident artists in its collection. Credit…Lam Yik Fei for The New York Times

HONG KONG — With its multibillion-dollar price tag and big-name artists, M+, the museum rising on Victoria Harbor, was meant to embody Hong Kong’s ambitions of becoming a global cultural hub. It was to be the city’s first world-class art museum, proof that Hong Kong could do high culture just as well as finance.

It may instead become the symbol of how the Chinese Communist Party is muzzling Hong Kong’s art world.

In recent days, the museum, which is scheduled to open later this year, has come under fierce attack from the city’s pro-Beijing politicians. State-owned newspapers have denounced the museum’s collection, which houses important works of contemporary Chinese art, including some by the dissident artist Ai Weiwei. Hong Kong’s chief executive has promised to be on “full alert” after a lawmaker called some works an “insult to the country.”

The arts sector broadly has endured a blizzard of attacks. A government funding body said last week that it has the power to end grants to artists who promoted “overthrowing” the authorities. A front-page editorial in a pro-Beijing newspaper accused six art groups of “anti-government” activities. Continue reading

Disgust at China’s state-sponsored ‘Uyghurface’ (1)

“The worst Uyghurface cosplay you ever did see” —

More on the racist use of dressed-up Uyghurface (= like ‘Blackface’) by official Chinese representatives, dancing around as fake, “happy” Uyghur people — in New Zealand: See today’s Twitter thread by Catherine Churchman, @C_M_Churchman.

Incredibly, among those naively playing along are both the mayor of the city of Auckland, Phil Goff, and, more incredibly, New Zealand’s Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon. Or is it knowingly — thus a NZ ‘race relations commissioner’ playing along with the racist mockery of the victims of China’s genocide in Xinjiang?

Magnus Fiskesjö <>

Language Diversity in the Sinophone World review

MCLC Resource Center is pleased to announce publication of Ashley Liu’s review of Language Diversity in the Sinophone World, edited by Henning Klöter and Mårten Söderblom Saarela. The review appears below and at its online home: My thanks to Nicholas Kaldis, our literary studies book review editor, for ushering the review to publication.

Kirk A. Denton, editor

Language Diversity in the Sinophone World: Historical
Trajectories, Language Planning, and Multilingual Practices

Edited by Henning Klöter and Mårten Söderblom Saarela

Reviewed by Ashley Liu

MCLC Resource Center Publication (Copyright March, 2021)

Henning Klöter and Mårten Söderblom Saarela, eds. Language Diversity in the Sinophone World: Historical Trajectories, Language Planning, and Multilingual Practices London: Routledge, 2020. xv + 330 pp. ISBN: 9780367504519.

Language Diversity in the Sinophone World is a collection of studies on the language policies and practices in polities that “pursue official language policies on the use of one or more Sinitic languages,” which include the PRC, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, and Singapore. Whereas the study of language policies and multilingualism in the Chinese-speaking world is not new, the unique contribution of this volume is its “intervention in the developing field of Sinophone studies” (1). Regarding the importance of this volume, Klöter and Saarela highlight the “paradox” that Sinophone studies place an inherent emphasis on language but rarely address issues of language policies and practices (1). The Sinophone world as constructed by Klöter and Saarela is significantly different from that characterized in existing Sinophone studies. Whereas existing Sinophone studies, following the vision of Shu-mei Shih, mainly involve postmodern, postcolonial, and postnational critiques and analyses of literature and cinema, Klöter and Saarela’s volume primarily relies on historical, linguistic, sociological, and quantitative approaches regarding language policies and practices. In doing so, they expand a domain previously dominated by scholars of literature and cinema to include historians, linguists, sociologists, language policy experts, and those who employ quantitative methods. As someone who belongs to the former category—the status quo in Sinophone studies—I evaluate this volume’s usefulness to literary and film studies. Continue reading

Infrastructure as Planetary Sculpture (1)

Interesting. A bit credulous, is it?

Anyhow, it makes me think of Sun Yat-sen’s manifesto, The International Development of China, 1922, which pretty much laid out the same entire infrastructure plan, including railroads to Europe and all that. While Sun emphasized it would be for peace, not domination, he’s totally blatant about annexing and colonizing the nations that had already been conquered by the Chinese empires he himself had only just overthrown.

It’s a manifesto of naked colonialism: On pp 20 ff (in the 1953 Taipei reprint available online), Sun speaks of how Chinese colonization of Sinkiang etc. will be profitable just as colonialism — in tandem with transportation infrastructure — has been so nicely profitable in places like the USA, Canada and Australia.

Until I saw Sun Yat-sen’s uninhibited but unrealized plans from the 1920s, which must be the origin of the Communist Party’s current schemes, I had thought the current BRI schemes may have originated with the fringe-extremist sect founded by the American Lyndon LaRouche, a curious figure whose political cult (in Europe, and beyond) has been widely dismissed as nuts, and ignored. But in China, curiously, he’s praised, books are written about him — and Chinese embassies abroad can’t get enough of photo-ops with local Larouchians regardless of their local insignificance, which ought to have made them a bit of a non-starter. Embassies never do anything except on Beijing instructions, so this means it is probably all because Larouche (1922–2019) was a BRI believer and open proponent long before anyone else, and so orders have been issued to honor him (albeit not directly credit him too much). (A bit like Russia shall never forget Kim Philby?).

Nevertheless it’s clear that today’s grandiose schemes, of all roads leading to the Communist party, actually precedes it, as a specifically Chinese-modern Gargantuan fantasy.

Magnus Fiskesjö <>