• (CNAS)

    Reporting from Xinjiang

    A Discussion with Journalist Megha Rajagopalan

    On September 20, 2018, ChinaFile and the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) co-hosted a discussion with BuzzFeed reporter Megha Rajagopalan on her reporting on state-sponsored ethnic and religious repression in Xinjiang and, in particular, on the recent mass detentions of Xinjiang’s Uighur and Kazakh residents. The discussion took place at CNAS’ offices in Washington DC and was moderated by Ely Ratner. Read full story>>

  • Mikhail Svetlov—Getty Images

    Whose Problem is Kenya’s Debt: Kenya’s or China’s?

    A China in Africa Podcast

    Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more via China Africa Project

    Nairobi-based international development economist Anzetse Were suggests in a new paper that Kenya’s leaders, not China, should be the ones held accountable for borrowing too much money without a detailed, transparent plan on how to repay the loans. She joins the podcast to discuss the growing anti-Chinese backlash in Kenya and the country’s burgeoning economic crisis. Read full story>>

  • Chung Sung-Jun—Getty Images

    North Korea Diplomacy and U.S.-China Relations

    A China in the World Podcast

    Paul Haenle & Kaiser Kuo via Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy

    Paul Haenle joined Kaiser Kuo to discuss next steps for DPRK diplomacy and tensions between the United States and China over trade, Taiwan, and the Belt and Road Initiative. Haenle shared his experience working as White House representative to the six-party talks in the Bush administration, and said China’s relations with North Korea reached a historic low in 2017 due to the leadership’s frustration with Pyongyang’s provocative nuclear and missile tests, leading to Beijing’s increased... Read full story>>

  • Fred DuFour—Pool/Getty Images

    Is the Trade War Hurting Xi Jinping Politically?

    A ChinaFile Conversation

    Roselyn Hsueh, Andrew J. Nathan & more via ChinaFile Conversation

    What are the domestic politics for Xi Jinping of a trade war? How much is the trade war actually hurting China’s economy? And what other effects is this having on China, and on Xi’s ability to govern? Read full story>>

  • Guo Rongfei—Arrow Factory Video

    From Pimp to Politician

    One Chinese Man and His Japanese Dream

    Guo Rongfei via Arrow Factory Video

    Walking through Kabukichō, a densely packed red-light district in Tokyo, one sometime spots 58-year-old Li Xiaomu, eager to point tourists to a good time. Born in the city of Changsha, Hunan province, Li moved to Tokyo in 1988 to study fashion design. To support himself, he found work as a cleaner in Kabukichō. When he realized that he could earn tips and commissions “just for pointing” tourists to places that “tickle their fancy,” Li became an annainin, or “tour guide.” Since then, his charm... Read full story>>

  • Lintao Zhang—Getty Images

    Should African Governments Welcome Or Be Wary of Chinese Infrastructure Investment?

    A China in Africa Podcast

    Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more via China Africa Project

    China announced a U.S.$60 billion financing package for African states to build out new roads, airports, railways, and other needed infrastructure. While no one questions the need for infrastructure, there are legitimate concerns as to whether it makes sense to borrow so much from China to pay for it. Read full story>>

  • News1-Dong-A Ilbo via Getty Images

    China and the U.S. Nuclear Posture Review

    A China in the World Podcast

    Zhao Tong & David Santoro via Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy

    The Trump administration’s Nuclear Posture Review, released earlier this year, emphasized the growing threat of nuclear competition in the Asia-Pacific, specifically with reference to Russia, North Korea, and China. In this podcast, Tong Zhao, of the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy, sat down with David Santoro, Director and Senior Fellow of Nuclear Policy Programs at the Pacific Forum CSIS, to explore pressing nuclear issues in the region and their implications for the U.S.-China... Read full story>>

  • Thomas Peter—Pool/Getty Images

    Peak Xi Jinping?

    Geremie R. Barmé

    The adulation of Xi Jinping, China’s State President, Party General Secretary, and Chairman of the Central Military Commission, has yet to reach similar lofty heights as that of Mao Zedong. However, on September 3, the official Beijing media took a brave step in the direction of Mao-era excess. In reporting on the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation and Xi Jinping’s meetings and talks with various heads of African nations, the front page of the People’s Daily featured Xi’s name no fewer than 45... Read full story>>

  • (Image courtesy of Google Earth)

    What Satellite Images Can Show Us about ‘Re-education’ Camps in Xinjiang

    A Q&A with Shawn Zhang

    Jessica Batke

    Claims that “re-education” camps are merely vocational training centers seem even less credible after one looks at the work of Shawn Zhang. A law student focusing on jurisprudence at the University of British Columbia in Canada, in May Zhang began scouring Google Earth for evidence of detentions in Xinjiang—matching up the addresses he found in documents related to the camps that he found online with satellite images; learning to recognize the distinguishing characteristics of camps, both in... Read full story>>

Recent Stories

Conversation

08.01.18

What Would a U.S. War—or Peace—with Iran mean for China?

Jarrett Blanc, Michael Kovrig & more
China is the largest buyer of Iranian oil, Iran’s largest trading partner, and arguably its most important positive political relationship. What do Trump’s threats to Iran mean for China’s relationship with the country? And how would a war between...

Conversation

07.12.18

Can China Replace the U.S. in Europe?

Jan Weidenfeld, Isabel Hilton & more
The G7 debacle reminded Europeans the problems with relying on a fraying transatlantic partnership. Meanwhile, China has been playing a larger role on the continent, increasing its investment and its political influence. On July 6-7, Bulgaria held...

Conversation

06.14.18

One Year After They Almost Went to War, Can China and India Get Along?

Joel Wuthnow, Selina Ho & more
One year ago, the Chinese and Indian armies faced off at Doklam, a disputed Himalayan area on the border between China, India, and the tiny kingdom of Bhutan. While the two sides didn’t go to war over the border as they did in 1962, tensions were...

Resetting China-India Relations

Paul Haenle & C. Raja Mohan from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
Following a year marked by mounting tensions between China and India, President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi met in Wuhan for an informal summit in April to reset the relationship. Major points of tension dominating China-India...

Conversation

05.11.18

Do American Companies Need to Take a Stance on Taiwan?

J. Michael Cole, Frances Kitt & more
China’s airline regulator recently sent a letter to 36 international air carriers requiring them to remove from their websites references implying that Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau are not part of China. In a surprisingly direct May 5 statement, the...

Photography & Video

Video

09.07.18

From Pimp to Politician

Guo Rongfei from Arrow Factory Video
Walking through Kabukichō, a densely packed red-light district in Tokyo, one sometime spots 58-year-old Li Xiaomu, eager to point tourists to a good time. Born in the city of Changsha, Hunan province, Li moved to Tokyo in 1988 to study fashion...

Video

08.08.18

The Window

Zhou Na
I have spent three years collecting accounts and examining how survivors and families have coped since that traumatic event. I document the lingering pain, to resist public forgetting and indifference. Hundreds of photographs bear witness to the...

Depth of Field

06.28.18

Staying on Point in Rural China

Ye Ming, Yan Cong & more from Yuanjin Photo
In this edition of Depth of Field: aspiring ballerinas, what’s beneath the gilt in a rich Zhejiang town, worn out doctors, disappearing schools, melting snow, data farms, and the powerful appeal of dancing outdoors.

Books

Books

07.26.18

Imperial Twilight

Stephen Platt
Alfred A. Knopf: As China reclaims its position as a world power, Imperial Twilight looks back to tell the story of the country’s last age of ascendance and how it came to an end in the 19th-century Opium War.When Britain launched its first war on China in 1839, pushed into hostilities by profiteering drug merchants and free-trade interests, it sealed the fate of what had long been seen as the most prosperous and powerful empire in Asia, if not the world. But internal problems of corruption, popular unrest, and dwindling finances had weakened China far more than was commonly understood, and the war would help set in motion the eventual fall of the Qing dynasty—which, in turn, would lead to the rise of nationalism and communism in the 20th century. As one of the most potent turning points in the country’s modern history, the Opium War has since come to stand for everything that today’s China seeks to put behind it.In this dramatic, epic story, award-winning historian Stephen Platt sheds new light on the early attempts by Western traders and missionaries to “open” China—traveling mostly in secret beyond Canton, the single port where they were allowed—even as China’s imperial rulers were struggling to manage their country’s decline and Confucian scholars grappled with how to use foreign trade to China’s advantage. The book paints an enduring portrait of an immensely profitable and mostly peaceful meeting of civilizations at Canton over the long term that was destined to be shattered by one of the most shockingly unjust wars in the annals of imperial history. Brimming with a fascinating cast of British, Chinese, and American individuals, this riveting narrative of relations between China and the West has important implications for today’s uncertain and ever-changing political climate.{chop}

Books

07.10.18

Blood Letters

Lian Xi
Basic Books: The staggering story of the most important Chinese political dissident of the Mao era, a devout Christian who was imprisoned, tortured, and executed by the regime.Blood Letters tells the astonishing tale of Lin Zhao, a poet and journalist arrested by the authorities in 1960 and executed eight years later, at the height of the Cultural Revolution. Openly and steadfastly opposing communism under Mao, she rooted her dissent in her Christian faith—and expressed it in long, prophetic writings done in her own blood, and at times on her clothes and on cloth torn from her bedsheets.Miraculously, Lin Zhao’s prison writings survived, though they have only recently come to light. Drawing on these works and others from the years before her arrest, as well as interviews with her friends, her classmates, and other former political prisoners, Lian Xi paints an indelible portrait of courage and faith in the face of unrelenting evil.{chop}

Reports

Reports

09.01.17

The Costs of International Advocacy

Human Rights Watch
Even as it engages with U.N. human rights institutions, China has worked consistently and often aggressively to silence criticism of its human rights record before U.N. bodies and has taken actions aimed at weakening some of the central mechanisms...

Reports

05.24.17

China’s Social Credit System: A Big-Data Enabled Approach to Market Regulation with Broad Implications for Doing Business in China

Mirjam Meissner
Mirjam Meissner
Mercator Institute for China Studies
Under the catchphrase “Social Credit System,” China is currently implementing a new and highly innovative approach to monitoring, rating, and regulating the behavior of market participants. The Social Credit System will have significant impact on...

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