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Tech giant shares ancient poem

Source: BBC News (5/11/21)
Meituan: China tech giant’s shares slide over ancient poem

Wang Xing, Founder and CEO of Meituan.com.

Wang Xing, Founder and CEO of Meituan.com. GETTY IMAGES

Shares in Chinese food delivery giant Meituan have fallen sharply after its boss reportedly shared a 1,000-year-old poem on social media.

The Book Burning Pit [焚書坑] by Zhang Jie was posted, then deleted, by the firm’s billionaire chief executive, Wang Xing. The Tang dynasty poem was interpreted as a veiled criticism of President Xi Jinping’s government. Meituan is currently under investigation over allegations of abusing its market dominance.

The company is one of China’s biggest takeaway food delivery and lifestyle services platforms and is backed by technology giant Tencent. It has a market valuation of around $220bn (£156bn) and in April raised $10bn to fund its investment plans for deliveries using drones and self-driving vehicles.

Chinese media reported that after deleting the post on Sunday from the Fanfou social media platform, Mr Wang issued a clarification, saying that the poem was a reference to his company’s competitors. Continue reading

Rapper NINEONE#

Source: SupChina (5/7/21)
Chinese rapper NINEONE# says expressing empathy for men doesn’t make her anti-feminist
She’s a huge star known for her feminist hip-hop lyrics, but now Nǎi Wàn 乃万 a.k.a. NINEONE# is under fire for remarks she made onstage that some women felt undermine their quest for equality.
By Jiayun Feng

nineone

Rapper Nǎi Wàn 乃万 a.k.a. NINEONE#.

Another week, another gender debate. Or so it’s beginning to seem when it comes to the Chinese internet, where public outcry over questionable views about gender and women’s roles has become increasingly swift and loud.

This time, the lightning rod is woman rapper Nǎi Wàn 乃万, also known as NINEONE#. Her remarks at a music festival last week about the burdens men face in society touched off a firestorm of controversy. Many commenters, apparently women fed up with China’s retrograde gender dynamics, told the 24-year-old artist to “check her privilege” before preaching her understanding of gender equality.

“Boys have many dreams, too, when they are young, like becoming an athlete or a professional gamer. But when they reach 18, their goals are all about buying a house and a car,” Nai said (in Chinese) onstage last Sunday, suggesting that because men are traditionally expected to be the primary breadwinner in a relationship, they have to let their passion take a backseat when choosing careers.

And in order to free men from this dilemma, the musician went on to urge girls to have “more consideration and tolerance” for the boys they love, so that they can continue to pursue their aspirations. “Girls need to stay true to themselves as well. That’s what gender equality is really about,” she added. Continue reading

Misogynistic trolls dunk on Tsinghua dancers

Source: SupChina (5/4/21)
Misogynistic trolls band together to dunk on dance-loving young women at Tsinghua University
A video of students at Tsinghua doing dancing to celebrate their university’s 110th birthday went viral. Then the haters arrived. Guess why.
By Jiayun Feng

Misogynistic trolls band together to dunk on dance-loving young women at Tsinghua University

Dance-loving women at Tsinghua

Here’s another daily reminder that internet misogynists are horrible creatures and that women face harassment and vitriol on a daily basis just for wanting to have some fun by themselves. A group of female college students in China have found themselves confronting a barrage of obscenities and hateful comments online after a mobile phone video of them dancing in public went viral.

In the video, an all-girls dance troupe at the prestigious Tsinghua University delivers a nearly two-minute dance routine in celebration of the 110th anniversary of the school. With a marching band playing trumpets in the background, the nine students — wearing tight, gold mini dresses decorated with tassels — pull off a choreographed performance featuring body rolls, formation changes, and synchronized moves.

The dance was undoubtedly amateurish, but it was intended to be performed for a small audience on the Tsinghua campus, not for an enormous internet audience, and nothing about it was offensive. However, soon after the footage appeared on social media, commenters jumped on the video, saying the dance was an “inappropriate exhibit” at a birthday event. Continue reading

China’s global propaganda push

Must-listen new podcast about how the CCP propaganda machine is winning the fight, with its massive resources and flexible strategies, taking advantage of the openness of democracy to reshape the landscape, including doing things like all expenses paid tours for local newspapers, and getting educated young people in places like Australia and the US, to turn against international alliances (this podcast really gets you to see all the “left” Xinjiang denialists in a new light). –Magnus Fiskesjö, nf42@cornell.edu

Source: The Little Red Podcast (May 10, 2021)
Let’s get this party started: China’s global propaganda push.

Description:

For a Party chosen by history, the CCP spends a lot of money targeting foreign media outlets and governments. In this episode, a panel of researchers discusses why China—or any autocracy—cares what the world thinks of it, and how it tries to shape its global image. We ask whether the CCP’s media outreach and lobbying operations bear fruit, or are readily seen through as clumsy propaganda. This week, Graeme is joined by Louisa and the Little Red Podcast’s researcher Julia Bergin, discuss a survey on China’s global media outreach that they’ve just conducted for the International Federation of Journalists, as well as political scientist Erin Baggott Carter from the University of South California, and Alex Dukalskis from University College Dublin who has just written a book called Making the World Safe for Dictatorship.

UC Riverside lecturer positions

Lecturers in Chinese Language, UC Riverside

The Department of Comparative Literature and Languages seeks to appoint part-time lecturers in Chinese languages to teach a number of courses during the 2021-2022 academic year.

Starting Date: September 20, 2021

Salary: Present lecturer salary is approximately $7,047 per course (based on 100% annual salary of $56,381), (pending budget approval.) Appointment is eligible for renewal depending on need, funding and performance. These positions are contingent on funding

Qualifications: Minimum requirements are an M.A. in Chinese language or a related field; applicants holding a Ph.D., or who are ABD, are also encouraged to apply. Priority will be given to candidates with experience and success in teaching Chinese language at an American university.

Duties: Lecturers will teach one or more of the following courses: CHN 002 First-Year Chinese; CHN 003 First-Year Chinese; CHN 004 Second-Year Chinese; CHN 005 Second-Year Chinese; CHN 006 Second-Year Chinese

Fall 2021: Chinese 003 (1 section); Chinese 004 (2 sections) Winter 2022: Chinese 002, 003, 004, 005 (1 section each) Spring 2022: Chinese 002, 003, 006 (1 section each) Continue reading

HK pushes ‘fake news’ label

Source: NYT (5/6/21)
Hong Kong Pushes ‘Fake News’ Label as Media Face ‘Worst of Times’
The police distributed a magazine denouncing “rumors and lies,” and have warned news outlets against undermining national security.
By Austin Ramzy

The newsroom of Apple Daily in Hong Kong in 2020. The chief of police has accused the paper of “inciting hatred.” Credit…Lam Yik Fei for The New York Times

HONG KONG — The glossy pamphlet from the police, delivered to newsrooms in Hong Kong, declared: “Know the Facts: Rumors and Lies Can Never Be Right.” With it was a letter addressed to editors, decrying the “wicked and slanderous attacks” against the police.

The 12-page magazine, distributed Wednesday to news outlets including The New York Times, described the police’s efforts to push back against misinformation. In one instance, the department countered rumors that officers had attended a banquet with gang members, saying the police had held their own private dinner. In another, it accused a local TV station of smearing the police in a parody show.

“Fake news is highly destructive,” read one graphic carrying the hashtag #youarewhatyousend. Continue reading

National University of Singapore position

FACULTY POSITION IN CHINESE APPLIED LINGUISTICS, DEPARTMENT OF CHINESE STUDIES, NUS

The Department of Chinese Studies, National University of Singapore, is one of the leading institutions in the world in the fields of Chinese Studies and Chinese Language and a major academic and research centre in Southeast Asia.   We invite applications for the post of Tenure Track or Educator Track (Open Rank) in Chinese Applied Linguistics and/or Translation/Interpretation. Appointments on the Educator Track are aimed at faculty members who approach teaching as scholarly practice in addition to research in their field of study.

Applicants for this position should have a PhD and be an active researcher or practitioner in a subfield of applied linguistics, broadly interpreted, including but not limited to Translation/Interpretation research or practice.  Scholars who can contribute to interdisciplinarity in research or teaching, whether with humanities or science fields, are particularly encouraged to apply. Continue reading

Loyola University Maryland position

Loyola University Maryland Full-time Position (Fall 2021 Only)

The Department of Modern Languages & Literatures at Loyola University Maryland is seeking a one-semester, full-time Visiting Affiliate Assistant Professor or Instructor of Chinese in the fall semester of 2021. The candidate will teach four Chinese courses at the 100 level and 200 level, and perform service in the department and relating to the Chinese minor. More information can be found here:

https://careers.loyola.edu/postings/5417

Jinghua Wangling <jwangling@loyola.edu>

Ancient relief sculpture brought alive

Source: China Daily (4/29/21)
Relief sculpture brought alive after millennium
By chinadaily.com.cn

Actors hold live performance presenting the image of a relief sculpture dating back to the Northern Wei Dynasty (386-534), Zhengzhou, Central China’s Henan province, on April 28, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

Carved in Binyangzhong Cave, an imperial cave excavated in the Northern Wei Dynasty (386-534), the relief sculpture Emperor and Empress Pay Respect for Buddha is a national treasure of great historical and cultural values.In the 1930s, the sculpture was stolen and taken abroad in pieces. “We hope to resurrect this work through many forms, and this live-action performance is one of them. It took nearly three months to prepare,” Dan Gao, researcher of Longmen Grottoes Research Institute, said.

In order to restore the images on the relief, the research team collected literature and pictures, and studied the character’s makeup and hair, costumes, props and movements one by one.

Apart from the actors for the emperor and empress, most of the 40-plus cast members are young people born after 2000. Continue reading

NFTs in the PRC

Source: SupChina (4/26/21)
NFTs in the P.R.C. — crypto art craze comes to China
Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, took the international art world by storm in March after the sale of a piece of digital art for nearly $70 million. The Chinese art world and China’s many cryptocurrency entrepreneurs are taking note.
By Frida Qi

chinese nft art

NFT artwork by jinxiaoyao: City glimmer 9772A (城市微光9772A), which is currently selling on BlockCreateArt for 0.88 Ethereum, about $2,142 as of April 26, 2021.

Crypto art in the form of non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, took the international art world by storm in March after the sale of a piece of digital art by 250-year-old British auction house Christie’s for nearly $70 million. The Chinese art world and China’s many cryptocurrency entrepreneurs are taking note.

China has a crypto art market too: Hundreds of WeChat groups are now dedicated to the art form, and Weibo is flooded with explanatory videos that garner millions of views.

Can Chinese crypto art ‘break the circle’

Diana Tang, the founder of CryptoC, an NFT community in China, got into the NFT scene in 2019 when she was the editor-in-chief of a Chinese crypto publication. Back then, she recalled the popularity of CryptoPunks, a collection of 10,000 miniature cartoon avatar heads. The cartoons, like all NFTs, could be officially owned by a single person online through the Ethereum blockchain. At first, individual members of the crypto community could claim them for free. Later, she told SupChina, one avatar got sold for $800. Now, the same one can sell for millions of dollars. (Example: Punk #2212, a female with blue eye shadow, now costs $42,459.03.) Continue reading

Teaching the Living Dead: My Classroom in Xinjiang

The Sydney Morning Herald has published an excerpt from new English ed. of Sayragul Sauytbay’s book The Chief Witness: Escape from China’s Modern-Day Concentration Camps, with Alexandra Cavelius; trans. Caroline Waight. Melbourne and London: Scribe, 2021. ISBN: 9781922310538.–Magnus Fiskesjö <nf42@cornell.edu>

Source: Sydney Morning Herald (4/30/21)
Teaching the living dead: My classroom in Xinjiang
Sayragul Sauytbay escaped Xinjiang to tell of its detention camps. In this extract from her book, she relives a day of horror in a camp ‘classroom’.
By Sayragul Sauytbay and Alexandra Cavelius

Satellite imagery reveals expansion of Xinjiang detention centres

I’d scarcely set foot in the room at 7am before my 56 students rose to their feet, ankle shackles jangling, and shouted: “We’re ready!”

They all wore blue shirts and trousers. Their heads were shaved, their skin white as a corpse’s.

New satellite imagery reveals how China has been expanding its detention centres in the Xinjiang region, despite its claims that all detainees had ‘graduated’ after ‘re-education’.

I stood to attention in front of the board, flanked either side by two guards with automatic guns. I was so unprepared for the sight and so appalled that for a moment I almost tottered on my feet. Black eyes, mutilated fingers, bruises everywhere. Continue reading

Transitions in Taiwan: Stories of the White Terror

Transitions in Taiwan: Stories of the White Terror, edited by Ian Rowen, has just been published.

This book is part of the Cambria Literature in Taiwan Series, headed by Professor Nikky Lin (National Taiwan Normal University), a collaboration with the National Museum of Taiwan Literature, the National Human Rights Museum, and National Taiwan Normal University.

Paperback (ISBN: 9781621966975)  $32.99 • 290pp. • E-book editions start at $19.99—Order from Cambria Press.

Taiwan’s peaceful, democratic society is built upon decades of authoritarian state violence with which it is still coming to terms. At the close of World War II in 1945, after fifty years of Japanese colonization, Taiwan was occupied by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT). The party massacred thousands of Taiwanese while it established a military dictatorship on the island with the tacit support of the United States. Continue reading

The Museum Victoria City brings colonial history to life

Source: SCMP (5/3/21)
Hong Kong’s colonial history brought to life at The Museum Victoria City with avid collector’s authentic and reimagined artefacts
Collector and founder of The Museum Victoria City, Bryan Ong has been interested in colonial memorabilia since he was 15 years old. His collection includes medals, military jackets, banknotes and hand-painted reproductions
By

Bryan Ong, founder of The Museum in Central, Hong Kong. Ong has amassed a collection of British colonial and military items. Photo: Jonathan Wong

Bryan Ong, founder of The Museum in Central, Hong Kong. Ong has amassed a collection of British colonial and military items. Photo: Jonathan Wong

The recently opened The Museum Victoria City in Central takes visitors down memory lane, with a mixture of authentic and re-interpreted nostalgic items from colonial Hong Kong.

There are red British military ceremonial jackets, embroidered badges with a lion and a dragon, a full body armour plate, the old “Murray Building” sign before it was turned into a hotel, and the old Urban Council logo.

There’s also a portrait of young Queen Elizabeth wearing a crown and yellow evening gown that looks like it could have hung in a government building up until June 30, 1997, except that it isn’t a British government-issued portrait – instead it’s one the Museum’s founder Bryan Ong Ye-hou had painted.

“The original portrait is in The Royal Gallery. The royal portraits that were in the [Hong Kong] government buildings were all copies,” he says. There are surviving old government copies but these have faded. So he and his team repainted the portrait, which required research into the garter and details of the jewellery she was wearing. Continue reading

IJTS research article competition 2021

IJTS Research Article Competition, 2021

The International Journal of Taiwan Studies is pleased to announce the 2021 IJTS Research Article Competition. Since its launch in 2018, IJTS (ISSN: 2468-8800) has established itself as a principal outlet for the dissemination of cutting-edge research on Taiwan. IJTS is the first internationally collaborative, multidisciplinary, and peer-reviewed academic research journal in English dedicated to all aspects of Taiwan studies, including social sciences, arts and humanities, and topics which are interdisciplinary in nature. To continue the development of Taiwan studies and with the financial support of the European Association of Taiwan Studies (EATS), we announce a call for papers for the 2021 IJTS Research Article Competition. There are three categories of articles for entry: Arts and Humanities; Social Sciences; Indigenous Studies.

Each research article can only be entered in one category. IJTS Executive Editorial Board members and IJTS Advisory Board members are not eligible to enter the Competition.

Submission

If and when shortlisted, authors should provide a proof of valid current membership for either EATS, North American Taiwan Studies Association (NATSA) or Japan Association for Taiwan Studies (JATS). For co-authored papers, at least one of the authors must be a current member of one of the three associations. Continue reading

Cliff Walkers

Source: SCMP (4/30/21)
Cliff Walkers movie review: Zhang Yimou spy thriller, starring Liu Haocun, deceives with its labyrinthine narrative
Full of exhilarating action, the plot of this thriller, set in 1930s Manchuria, is overstuffed. Liu Haocun shines as the doe-eyed yet tough heroine, but the rest of the cast are forgettable
By

Liu Haocun in a still from Cliff Walkers (category IIB, Mandarin), directed by Zhang Yimou. Zhang Yi co-stars.

Liu Haocun in a still from Cliff Walkers (category IIB, Mandarin), directed by Zhang Yimou. Zhang Yi co-stars.

Zhang Yimou’s Cliff Walkers bursts at the seams with lavish visuals and a slew of exhilarating action sequences, as one might expect from the director of Hero and House of Flying Daggers.

Recalling everything from Where Eagles Dare to The Age of Shadows, this snow-driven spy caper delivers enough betrayals and double-crosses to make John le Carré seem like Tintin. However, the film’s labyrinthine narrative deceives and confounds its audience as readily as the protagonists, as we collectively struggle to recall exactly who is fighting on whose side.

Liu Haocun, Zhang’s latest ingénue and star of his still unreleased previous filmOne Second, plays one of four Soviet-trained agents who parachute into 1930s Japanese-occupied Manchuria on a mission to rescue a witness who can expose Japan’s atrocities to the world.

Continue reading