Wikipedia blocked in China

Source: BBC News (5/14/19)
Wikipedia blocked in China in all languages

Screenshot of Wikipedia add

Wikipedia is now blocked in China. Image copyright: PHILIPPE LOPEZ.

All language editions of Wikipedia have been blocked in mainland China since April, the Wikimedia foundation has confirmed. Internet censorship researchers found that Wikipedia had joined thousands of other websites which cannot be accessed in China.

The country had previously banned the Chinese language version of the site, but the block has now been expanded. Wikimedia said it had received “no notice” of the move. Continue reading

Red Sorghum tv series set destroyed

Xi Jinping has the set of the Red Sorghum tv series destroyed because he doesn’t like Mo Yan’s realism? Is there anything to this story?–kirk

Source: Independent Chinese Pen Center (5/12/19)

诺贝尔文学奖得主莫言的小说《红高粱家族》于1988年被导演张艺谋改编成电影,由巩俐主演;2013年再被拍成电视剧,由郑晓龙执导,周迅主演,剧组更在山东省高密市搭建影视城,具浓厚的中国乡村文学气息,于2016年成为国家3A级旅游景区。不过,关注内地人权及宗教的网媒《寒冬》报道,《红高粱》电视剧影视城的部份建筑于今年3月尾一夜间被拆毁,有指影城被强拆,是因为国家主席习近平不悦莫言写实;官方打压文艺界,有民众担忧文革再起。 Continue reading

Aarhus University position

This is a finalized version of an announcement previously posted on the list.–kirk

Professor of China Studies in a Global Perspective


The School of Culture and Society, Department of Global Studies, at Aarhus University invites applications for a permanent position as a full professor of China studies in a global perspective with a focus on modern or contemporary China. The position is available to start as soon as possible after 1 January 2020.

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

The professorship is being offered with a view to attracting talented applicants with an extensive and documented track record in innovative and internationally recognised research in the area of China studies, combined with specialist expertise in the humanities or social sciences as well as fluency in Chinese. The successful applicant will be expected to contribute to core activities at the School of Culture and Society and Aarhus University in general, and to strengthen the research activities and output of the Department of Global Studies in particular. Continue reading

TAP Review (spring 2019)

The spring 2019 issue of the Trans Asia Photography Review is now available online at (You may need to refresh your browser to view the new contents.) This issue, titled “Circulation,” features the following articles, book reviews, and interviews:


Clare Harris, “Creating a Space for Performing Tibetan Identities: A Curatorial Commentary”

Kevin Michael Smith, “Images Under Construction: Photomontage in Interwar Europe and Japan”

Yiwen Liu, “Witnessing Death: The Circulation of Lu Xun’s Postmortem Image”

Russet Lederman, “Photobooks by Women from Asia: A Conversation with Amanda Ling-Ning Lo, Miwa Susuda, and Iona Ferguson”

Chen Shuxia, Zhou Dengyan, and Shi Zhimin, “Photographic Praxis in China, 1930s-1980: A Conversation with Chen Shuxia, Shi Zhimin, and Zhou Dengyan about Shi Shaohua and the Friday Salon”

Erin Hyde Nolan, “The Gift of the Abdulhamid II Albums: The Consequences of Photographic Circulation” Continue reading

Gushi FM

Source: NYT (5/12/19)
In China, a Podcast Inspired by ‘This American Life’ Gives Voice to the Real
By Amy Qin

Kou Aizhe, creator and host of the Chinese storytelling podcast “Gushi FM,” says his goal is “to show the complexity of each person.” Credit: Yan Cong for The New York Times

BEIJING — Kou Aizhe, the creator and host of one of China’s most popular storytelling podcasts, has only one criterion for selecting stories.

“Any subject can work,” he said, “as long as it surprises me.”

What emerges is a collection of unusual stories told with an authenticity rarely heard in the country’s tightly scripted, propaganda-heavy state-run media.

A worker for a Chinese construction company describes a harrowing escape from war in Libya in an episode titled “I Shot an AK-47 at Them.” A young man recounts accompanying his ailing father to Switzerland to die by assisted suicide. A lesbian tells of her decision to enter a marriage of convenience to a gay man.

Taking inspiration from American programs like “This American Life” and WNYC’s “Snap Judgment,” Mr. Kou’s “Gushi FM” (Story FM in English) features stories told in the first person by ordinary Chinese of various backgrounds. Continue reading

Burying ‘Mr. Democracy’

Source: China Media Project (5/3/19)
By David Bandurski

Burying “Mr. Democracy”

Today, on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the May Fourth Movement, the political movement that arose out of student protests in Beijing in response to the Treaty of Versailles, “the youth” figure strongly in official propaganda. But as China’s leadership walks a tightrope, acknowledging this crucial anniversary while seeking to drain it of all hints of sanguine insurgence and youthful opposition (we are just weeks away from the anniversary of June Fourth), the story’s real protagonist is not China’s youth, but rather President Xi Jinping and the Party he leads.

The two most famous figures at the core of the “spirit” of the May Fourth Movement, Mr. Democracy and Mr. Science, are conspicuously absent. Continue reading

Liao Yiwu chronicles the ‘thugs’ who survived Tiananmen

Source: Quartz (5/7/19)
A Chinese writer in exile chronicles the lives of the “thugs” who survived Tiananmen Square in 1989
By Isabella Steger

Among the ever-growing number of Chinese dissidents living in Berlin is writer Liao Yiwu, who escaped to safety in Germany in 2011.

Liao was imprisoned in 1990 for four years for publicly reciting his poem, Massacre, which was written on the morning of the Tiananmen Square crackdown on June 4, 1989, and dedicated to the victims. After he was freed, he wrote a number of books exploring the lives of the downtrodden in China, all of which are banned there. He continued to be subject to intense surveillance and travel restrictions after his release.

A month before the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown, his book Bullets and Opium, a collection of stories of people who survived the incident, will be published in English for the first time. It was previously published in Taiwan and Germany, and will this year also be translated into Japanese and French.

The stories focus not on the student protesters whose names and experiences, Liao says, are well known, but on the lives of the ordinary, working-class citizens who bore the brunt of the army’s attacks. Liao details how these “thugs,” as they were labeled by the Communist Party, lived on the margins of society after they were released from prison, where they were subject to hard labor and torture. Liao is particularly interested in how this shaped love and sex for these men. “Many of those arrested were young men aged between 18 to 20. They never learned anything about women or relationships while they were in prison,” Liao told Quartz. “When they came out, the world had changed… And so, impotence became a common problem.” Continue reading

Wu Ming-yi at Pen World Voices Festival

Taiwanese writer Wu Ming-yi joins 2019 PEN World Voices Festival

The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York is pleased to announce that Taiwanese writer Wu Ming-yi will join two events at the 2019 Pen America World Voices Festival in New York from May 6 to 12.

Tuesday, May 7, 6:30-8:00 pm
“Meditations on War, presented with The Guardian”
Venue: Albertine (972 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10075)

Wu joins Laurent Gaudé (Hear Our Defeats) and Sinan Antoon (The Book of Collateral Damage) for a discussion on how humanity endures the memories of war and struggles to rebuild. Moderated by Julian Borger, world affairs editor for The Guardian.

Thursday, May 9, 6:30-10:00 pm
“Literary Quest: Westbeth Edition”
Venue: Westbeth Artists Housing and Center for the Arts (55 Bethune St., New York, NY 10014)

Salon-style readings and discussions led by Festival authors at the Westbeth Center for the Arts. Wu will read selected passages from his book The Stolen Bicycle.

For more information, please visit PEN World Voices Festival.

Posted by: Yu-Kai Lin

Tiananmen anniversary picket

Tiananmen Square Massacre
30th Anniversary Picket
London, June 1

On 15th April 1989 Hu Yaobang, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of China died from a heart attack. Students, who had been preparing to commemorate the ‘May 4th Movement’ of 1919 brought forward their demonstrations in response. By 17th April students marched from their universities into Tiananmen Square in the heart of Beijing, chanting pro-democracy slogans as they went. An indefinite student strike was started in Beijing and the protest spread to over 100 cities across China. At its peak over one million people were occupying the square.

With conflicting demands and with individual students bickering for leadership roles, the students attempted to negotiate with different factions within the Party leadership. In response to the failure of these talks, some students declared a hunger strike and this action galvanised support from other sections of the population. Continue reading

Simon Leys: Navigator between Worlds review

Source: Commonweal (5/6/19)
The Generalist: Philip Paquet’s ‘Simon Ley’
Reviewed by Nicholas Haggerty

Simon Leys: Navigator between Worlds
Philippe Paquet
Translated by Julie Rose
La Trobe University Press, $59.99, 692 pp.

Mathew Lynn, Portrait of Pierre Ryckmans (Simon Leys), 2010 (Courtesy of the artist)

In the second half of the twentieth century, the definition of a public intellectual underwent a gradual but profound change, as generalists gave way to academic specialists. Sinology makes for the perfect case study of this transition. From its origins in the Jesuit missions until the mid-twentieth century, sinology favored breadth over depth; it presumed that an individual scholar could take the whole of Chinese civilization—including its language, art, and history—as his or her subject. This romantic way of approaching the study of China came to an end during the Cold War as sinology, at least in the United States, was fully assimilated into the academic field of China studies. Within this field, there were major disagreements on the proper relationship between scholarship and American foreign policy—but there was, at least, fundamental agreement about what kind of research and books counted as genuine scholarship. As the study of China was professionalized, those who did not specialize were generally looked down upon as dilettantes. Continue reading

Indiescape HK and the Post-Handover Film World–cfp

Ex-position Feature Topic Call for Papers
(Guest Editor: Kenny Kwok Kwan Ng, Hong Kong Baptist University)
Publication Date: December 2019 (Issue No. 42)
Submission Deadline: July 1, 2019

“Independent cinema” in Hong Kong has gained much currency both in academia and in film production and reception circles since the 1997 handover. Despite the fact that the term itself is frequently invoked in critical discourse and film festival programming, the meanings and contours of independent cinema as it is practiced in Hong Kong remain a matter of debate, except for the general consensus that being “independent” in moviemaking confers a disposition of distancing from the mainstream film industry in terms of styles, genres, modes of production and exhibition, financing, or public reception. Independent filmmakers can be bona fide auteurs who have greater control over the subject matter and stylistic choices of their works compared with their mainstream counterparts. Still, creative autonomy is never absolute and always comes with a cost. Filmmakers have to play by the rules of the emerging habitus of independent cinema, while the dynamic and ambivalent exchanges between independent and mainstream cinema are constantly at play in Hong Kong when an independent filmmaker (or film) enters mainstream production and circulation. Continue reading

Finding a voice

Source: China File (3/28/19)
Finding a Voice
By Lü Pin(吕频)

Lü Pin is a Chinese feminist activist focusing on strategic advocacy to combat gender-based discrimination and violence. She started her work on women’s rights in the late 1990s. In 2009, she founded Feminist Voices, China’s largest new media platform on women’s issues. Since 2012, she has been devoted to supporting the activism of young feminists across China. She now resides in Albany, New York, where she continues to follow the feminist movement in China closely.

(Courtesy of Chinese Feminist Activists) A protest against domestic violence in China, 2013.

[This article was first published in the “China” issue of Logic, a magazine about technology.]

When I started writing this article, Feminist Voices had been deleted for six months and ten days. Yes, I have been keeping track of the time: ten days, fifteen days, thirty days, sixty days, three months, six months. . . The first week after it disappeared from the Internet, my heart was filled with mourning; every day I lay in bed and cried. As time went by, I seemed to see a figure drifting away, but her soul was still near me. And her name will always linger in my mind. Continue reading

Games and Play in China–cfp

Dear all,

A friendly reminder that the abstracts for the edited volume “Games and Play in China from the Early Modern to the Contemporary” are due by May 15, 2019. Interested authors, please submit chapter proposals of 500-750 words to Douglas Eyman <>, Hongmei Sun <>, and Li Guo <>. Please see the following for details.

CFP: Games and Play in China from the Early Modern to the Contemporary
Editors: Douglas Eyman, Li Guo, and Hongmei Sun

The editors of this volume invite submission of chapters that address the ‘cultural rhetorics of gaming’ – that is, the ways in which games inhabit, represent, disrupt, or transform cultural and social practices in specific contexts. Scholarship on games and gaming has proliferated across a number of fields, including game studies, rhetoric and writing, translation studies, and education, among others. Gaming is fast becoming a nearly ubiquitous activity with global reach (particularly digital gaming – but not just limited to online activity, as increased sales of board games and role-playing games attest). The central argument in this collection is that games operate as cultural agents specific to their temporal and ecological contexts. Games are connected to the times in which they were invented, and represent the cultural functions of that time, but also continue beyond the moment of origination and connect past concerns to those in the present. Changes in the context of games – transcultural transformation – can demonstrate relationships between and among disparate cultures, as represented through game adaptations. In a similar vein, games also interact with other media, including literature and film, in ways that convey cultural value. Continue reading

Founding of the Society of Sinophone Studies

Founding the Society of Sinophone Studies
May 4, 2019

Following the successful “Sinophone Studies” conference held in April of this year at the University of California, Los Angeles, we announce the formation of the Society of Sinophone Studies to promote the study of Sinitic-language communities and cultures around the world. The Society seeks to provide support for scholars with an interest in Sinophone studies and welcomes any regional, disciplinary, and topical expertise. More details about the Society will follow; please contact Howard Chiang ( for preliminary inquiries.

Inaugural Governing Board

Chair: Howard Chiang, University of California, Davis 
Vice Chair: E.K. Tan, Stony Brook University
Secretary-Treasurer: Rebecca Ehrenwirth, New York University Shanghai 
Program Director: Brian Bernards, University of Southern California
Communications Director: Lily Wong, American University

Posted by: E.K. Tan <>