Guido Alberto Rossi—TIPS/Zuma Press

Did the Game Just Change in the South China Sea? (And What Should the U.S. Do About It?)

A ChinaFile Conversation

Yanmei Xie & Andrew S. Erickson via ChinaFile Conversation

As the 14th annual Asia Security Summit—or the Shangri-la Dialogue, as it has come to be known—gets underway in Singapore, we asked contributors to comment on what appears to be a recent escalation in tensions between the U.S. and China over the two countries’ presence in the South China Sea.—The Editors.


Johannes Eisele—AFP/Getty Images

Is the Shanghai Stock Market Bubble Finally Bursting?

David Wertime via Tea Leaf Nation

A customer strolls into a bookstore, goes the popular Chinese joke, and tells the salesperson: “I’m looking for a book with no killers, but much bloodshed; with no love, but great regret; with no spies, but constant paranoia. Can you make a recommendation?” Just one, the salesperson replies: The State of the Chinese Stock Market.Then there’s this one about a Chinese investor: “In the morning, he watches the K-line graph,” which tracks the perambulations of a share’s price. “In the afternoon, he goes to the hospital to watch his electrocardiogram.”{node, 11236}These are just two of many snippets of gallows humor widely shared in the dark days of the Chinese stock market. They have been few...


Feng Li—Getty Images

What China’s Lack of Transparency Means for U.S. Policy

Susan Shirk via Two Way Street

I am a political scientist and former diplomat who has studied China for more than forty years, and yet I still can’t answer some of my students’ most basic questions about China’s policy-making process. Where—in which institutional arena and at what level—are various policy issues deliberated and adopted? Which matters are decided by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and which by the government? What role does the People’s Liberation Army play in foreign policy? The CCP Central Committee has the formal authority to select the country’s top leaders, but who actually determines the slate of nominees to be ratified by the Central Committee?This lack of knowledge stems not just from my own...


Chen Liang

Chinese Posters Warn of the Dangers of Smog

via chinadialogue

{slideshow, 16211, 4}An exhibition of smog-inspired posters is touring the polluted cities of northern and eastern China this month to draw attention to the impending environmental disaster.Created by a group of Chinese designers, the 300 posters depict the terrifying face of smog to show how pollution changes our lives—and even our genes: One image shows a baby with a birthmark in the shape of a mask over his face.The posters have resonated with people in China and elsewhere. A Mr. Wang, who has taken his family to live abroad, said on WeChat that “although we’re not in China, our compatriots back home suffering, and that makes every Chinese person sad.”Posters Record Life in SmogDesigners...


Peter Parks—AFP/Getty Images

Weighing Mao’s Legacy in China Today

ChinaFile Presents

Roderick MacFarquhar, Susan Shirk & more

At the May 21 Asia Society event ChinaFile Presents: Does Xi Jinping Represent a Return to the Politics of the Mao Era?, a discussion of author Andrew Walder’s new book, China Under Mao: A Revolution Derailed, sparked a lively debate about the effects of the rule the Great Helmsman (1949-1976) on China’s current president.Moderated by Orville Schell, Arthur Ross Director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations at Asia Society, the discussion might also have been titled “China: Back to the Future?” or “Is Xi Cast In or Out from Underneath Mao’s Shadow?” (Xi’s father was in Mao’s cohort).Walder, a Stanford University sociologist, was joined on stage by Harvard University historian Roderick...


(AFP/Getty Images)

Chinese Racist Views Towards Blacks and Africans

A China in Africa Podcast

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more

When riots broke out in the U.S. city of Baltimore in May 2015, the reaction across the Chinese social web was sadly predictable as Internet users posted countless anti-black racist comments. However, what was interesting about their posts is how there is seemingly a growing conflation of African-Americans and African migrants in the minds of Chinese netizens. Now that China is home to tens of thousands of African immigrants, those racist comments morphed into xenophobia.{node, 15586}Viola Rothschild is a Fulbright Scholar at the Institute of African Studies at Zhejiang Normal University. She posted a commentary on Foreign Policy magazine’s website that focused on the increasingly complex...


ERIC FEFERBERG/AFP/Getty Images

Identity, Race, and Civilization

A Sinica Podcast

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more via Sinica Podcast

It doesn't take much exposure to China to realize the pervasiveness of identity politics here. Indeed, whether in the Chinese government’s occasionally hamfisted efforts to micromanage ethnic minority cultures or the Foreign Ministry’s soft-power promotion efforts abroad, it seems that barely a day goes by without someone in the Chinese government confusing the idea of China (the state) with the Han ethnic diaspora.This week, Kaiser Kuo and Jeremy Goldkorn are joined by David Moser, Director of the CET immersion program in Beijing, and Jeremiah Jenne, renegade Qing historian and director of The Hutong. We chat about what it means to be Chinese, where these ideas came from, and whether...

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Recent Stories

Conversation

05.21.15

Censorship and Publishing in China

Andrew J. Nathan, Zha Jianying & more
This week, a new PEN American Center report “Censorship and Conscience: Foreign Authors and the Challenge of Chinese Censorship,” by Alexa Olesen, draws fresh attention to a perennial problem for researchers, scholars, and creative writers trying to...

Sinica Podcast

05.26.15

Identity, Race, and Civilization

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more
It doesn't take much exposure to China to realize the pervasiveness of identity politics here. Indeed, whether in the Chinese government’s occasionally hamfisted efforts to micromanage ethnic minority cultures or the Foreign Ministry’s soft-...

Chinese Racist Views Towards Blacks and Africans

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
When riots broke out in the U.S. city of Baltimore in May 2015, the reaction across the Chinese social web was sadly predictable as Internet users posted countless anti-black racist comments. However, what was interesting about their posts is how...

Mao’s China: The Language Game

Perry Link
It can be embarrassing for a China scholar like me to read Eileen Chang’s pellucid prose, written more than sixty years ago, on the early years of the People’s Republic of China. How many cudgels to the head did I need before arriving at comparable...

Books

Books

05.19.15

No Ordinary Disruption

Richard Dobbs, James Manyika, Jonathan Woetzel
Our intuition on how the world works could well be wrong. We are surprised when new competitors burst on the scene, or businesses protected by large and deep moats find their defenses easily breached, or vast new markets are conjured from nothing. Trend lines resemble saw-tooth mountain ridges.The world not only feels different. The data tell us it is different. Based on years of research by the directors of the McKinsey Global Institute, No Ordinary Disruption: The Four Forces Breaking All the Trends is a timely and important analysis of how we need to reset our intuition as a result of four forces colliding and transforming the global economy: the rise of emerging markets; the accelerating impact of technology on the natural forces of market competition; an aging world population; and accelerating flows of trade, capital, and people.Our intuitions formed during a uniquely benign period for the world economy—often termed the Great Moderation. Asset prices were rising, cost of capital was falling, labor and resources were abundant, and generation after generation was growing up more prosperous than their parents.But the Great Moderation has gone. The cost of capital may rise. The price of everything from grain to steel may become more volatile. The world’s labor force could shrink. Individuals, particularly those with low job skills, are at risk of growing up poorer than their parents.What sets No Ordinary Disruption apart is depth of analysis combined with lively writing informed by surprising, memorable insights that enable us to quickly grasp the disruptive forces at work. For evidence of the shift to emerging markets, consider the startling fact that, by 2025, a single regional city in China—Tianjin—will have a GDP equal to that of the Sweden, or that, in the decades ahead, half of the world’s economic growth will come from 440 cities including Kumasi in Ghana or Santa Carina in Brazil that most executives today would be hard-pressed to locate on a map.What we are now seeing is no ordinary disruption but the new facts of business life—facts that require executives and leaders at all levels to reset their operating assumptions and management intuition.—PublicAffairs{chop}

Books

05.05.15

Meet Me in Venice

Suzanne Ma
When Ye Pei dreamed of Venice as a girl, she imagined a magical floating city of canals and gondola rides. And she imagined her mother, successful in her new life and eager to embrace the daughter she had never forgotten. But when Ye Pei arrives in Italy, she learns her mother works on a farm far from the city. Her only connection, a mean-spirited Chinese auntie, puts Ye Pei to work in a small-town café. Rather than giving up and returning to China, a determined Ye Pei takes on a grueling schedule, resolving to save enough money to provide her family with a better future.{node, 15611}A groundbreaking work of journalism, Meet Me in Venice provides a personal, intimate account of Chinese individuals in the very act of migration. Suzanne Ma spent years in China and Europe to understand why Chinese people choose to immigrate to nations where they endure hardship, suspicion, manual labor, and separation from their loved ones. Today, all eyes are on China and its explosive economic growth. With the rise of the Chinese middle class, Chinese communities around the world are growing in size and prosperity, a development many westerners find unsettling and even threatening. Following Ye Pei’s undaunted path, this inspiring book is an engrossing read for those eager to understand contemporary China and the enormous impact of Chinese emigrants around the world. —Rowman & Littlefield{chop} 

Reports

Reports

05.20.15

Censorship and Conscience

PEN International

In this report, PEN American Center (PEN) examines how foreign authors in particular are navigating the heavily censored Chinese book industry. China is one of the largest book publishing markets in the world, with total revenue projected to exceed $16 billion in 2015 and a...

Reports

04.01.15

Revising U.S. Grand Strategy Toward China

Council on Foreign Relations

China represents and will remain the most significant competitor to the United States for decades to come. As such, the need for a more coherent U.S. response to increasing Chinese power is long overdue. Because the American effort to “integrate” China into the liberal...

Photography and Video

Video

08.12.14

Chinese Dreamers

Sharron Lovell & Tom Wang
A dream, in the truest sense, is a solo act. It can’t be created by committee or replicated en masse. Try as you might, you can’t compel your neighbor to conjure up the reverie that you envision. And therein lies the latent, uncertain energy in the...

ChinaFile Presents

Media

05.26.15

Weighing Mao’s Legacy in China Today

Roderick MacFarquhar, Susan Shirk & more
At the May 21 Asia Society event ChinaFile Presents: Does Xi Jinping Represent a Return to the Politics of the Mao Era?, a discussion of author Andrew Walder’s new book, China Under Mao: A Revolution Derailed, sparked a lively debate about the...

Media

05.15.14

Evan Osnos: China’s ‘Age of Ambition’

Evan Osnos & Orville Schell
New Yorker correspondent Evan Osnos discusses his new book, Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China, with Orville Schell, Arthur Ross Director of Asia Society's Center on U.S.-China Relations.{chop} ...

Media

05.22.13

On “Strange Stones,” a Discussion with Peter Hessler

Peter Hessler, Michael Meyer & more
On May 21st at the Asia Society in New York City, Peter Hessler, author of the recently published Strange Stones: Dispatches from East and West, discussed his book and a decade of writing about China and elsewhere with author, Michael Meyer and...

Around the Web

Should Authors Shun or Cooperate With Chinese Censors?

A PEN American Center report found some books were expurgated by Chinese censors without the authors knowledge....

New York Times

Corrupting the Chinese Language

The author fears Orwell’s prediciton: “If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.”...

New York Times

China Issues First White Paper on Military Strategy

The document used expressions new to Chinese white papers, such as “active defense.”...

China Daily

How America Should Respond to China’s Moves in the South China Sea

U.S. military superiority is required to keep the Asia-Pacific region from getting out of hand. ...

National Interest

China to Expand Naval Operations Amid Growing Tensions With U.S.

Changes designed to address U.S. rebalance in Asia and other challenges....

Wall Street Journal

Sex Trade Goes Underground in China’s ‘Sin City’

More than 2,000 hotels, saunas and massage parlors were shut down in Dongguan. ...

CNN

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