Beijing’s Bold New Censorship

Perry Link from New York Review of Books
Authoritarians, in China and elsewhere, normally have preferred to dress their authoritarianism up in pretty clothes. Lenin called the version of dictatorship he invented in 1921 “democratic centralism,” but it became clear, especially after Stalin...

Viewpoint

08.22.17

Burn the Books, Bury the Scholars!

Geremie R. Barmé
Chinese censorship has come a long way. During his rule in the second century B.C.E., the First Emperor of a unified China, Ying Zheng, famously quashed the intellectual diversity of his day by ‘burning the books and burying the scholars’. He not...

Conversation

08.21.17

Should Publications Compromise to Remain in China?

Margaret Lewis, Andrew J. Nathan & more
The prestigious “China Quarterly will continue to publish articles that make it through our rigorous double-blind peer review regardless of topic or sensitivity,” wrote editor Tim Pringle on Monday after days of intense criticism of the brief-lived...

Conversation

03.22.17

China Writers Remember Robert Silvers

Ian Johnson, Orville Schell & more
Robert Silvers died on Monday, March 20, after serving as The New York Review of Books Editor since 1963. Over almost six decades, Silvers cultivated one of the most interesting, reflective, and lustrous stables of China writers in the world, some...

Chinese Maths Textbooks to Be Translated for U.K. Schools

Benjamin Haas
Guardian
HarperCollins signs ‘historic’ deal with Shanghai publishers amid hopes it will boost British students’ performance

‘Is This What the West Is Really Like?’ How It Felt to Leave China for Britain

Xiaolu Guo
Guardian
Desperate to find somewhere she could live and work as she wished, Xiaolu Guo moved from Beijing to London in 2002.

Viewpoint

12.01.16

Why I’m Giving Away My Book in China

Mei Fong
After a decade covering Asia for The Wall Street Journal, I devoted three years of my life to researching and writing a book about China’s one-child policy, One Child: The Story of China’s Most Radical Experiment. This month, I’m giving away the...

Inside and Outside the System: Chinese Writer Hu Fayun

Ian Johnson from New York Review of Books
Over the summer, I traveled to Wuhan to continue my series of talks with people about the challenges facing China. Coming here was part of an effort to break out of the black hole of Beijing politics and explore the view from China’s vast hinterland...

If Mao Had Been a Hermit

Perry Link from New York Review of Books
At the annual meeting of BookExpo America that was held in New York last May, to which most leading U.S. publishers sent representatives, state-sponsored Chinese publishers were named “guests of honor.” Commercially speaking, this made sense. China’...

China's Increasingly Muffled Press

New York Times
Mr. Xi recently visited the three main newsrooms in the country to convey in unmistakable terms that journalists are expected to behave like apparatchiks.

Conversation

02.23.16

How Long Can China’s Internet Thrive if the Rest of the World Gets Shut Out?

David Schlesinger, Jeff South & more
Last week, Chinese authorities announced that as of March 10, foreign-invested companies would not be allowed to publish anything on the Chinese Internet unless they have obtained government permission to publish with a Chinese partner. What does...

‘My Personal Vendetta’

Ian Johnson from New York Review of Books
The presumed kidnapping of the Hong Kong bookseller and British citizen Lee Bo late last year has brought international attention to the challenges faced by the Hong Kong publishing business. During a break from The New York Review’s conference on...

Q. and A.: Bei Ling on the Missing Hong Kong Booksellers

Luo Siling
New York Times
The disappearance of five Hong Kong booksellers in recent months has attracted international attention 

Science-Fiction Prize Is Awarded to Chinese Writer for First Time

Didi Kirsten Tatlow
New York Times
The Chinese writer Liu Cixin has won the 2015 Hugo Award, the first time the prestigious prize has gone to a Chinese writer.

Sinica Podcast

07.01.15

Who Will Save Us from the Self-help Revolution?

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more
Someone desperately needs to call a fumigator, because China’s self-help bug is eating up the woodwork. Train station bookstores may always have served the genre’s trite pablum to bored businessmen legging it cross-country, but in recent months the...

Viewpoint

06.11.15

Why I Publish in China

Peter Hessler
A couple of weeks ago, I received a request from a New York Times reporter to talk about publishing in China. The topic has been in the news lately, with the BookExpo in New York, where Chinese publishers were the guests of honor. In May, the PEN...

Media

06.09.15

Chinese Censorship of Western Books Is Now Normal. Where’s the Outrage?

Alexa Olesen
In September 2014, I was commissioned by the New York-based free speech advocacy group PEN American Center to investigate how Western authors were navigating the multibillion-dollar Chinese publishing world and its massive, but opaque, censorship...

Sinica Podcast

06.08.15

Writers: Heroes in China?

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more from Sinica Podcast
If you happen to live in the anglophone world and aren’t closely tied to China by blood or professional ties, chances are that what you believe to be true about this country is heavily influenced by the opinions of perhaps one hundred other people,...

Alibaba to Invest in China Business News

Wei Gu and Gillian Wong
Wall Street Journal
E-commerce giant to pay about $200 million for a 30% stake.

Media

06.02.15

Top Chinese Authors Show Up at Book Expo, but Where Are the Readers?

Zhang Xiaoran
Last week, 20,000 publishers convened in New York’s Javits Center for BookExpo America (BEA), the publishing industry’s annual trade show. Among their ranks was a delegation from China 500 strong, attending the convention in the capacity of “guest...

Should Authors Shun or Cooperate With Chinese Censors?

Elliott Spirling, Chan Koonchung, John...
New York Times
A PEN American Center report found some books were expurgated by Chinese censors without the authors knowledge.

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...

Liu Xiaobo Locked Up in China, Locked Out of Translation of Paul Auster Novel

Chris Buckley
New York Times
Liu Xiaobo’s arrest was cut from the Chinese translation of Auster's novel without his knowledge...

An American Hero in China

Ian Johnson from New York Review of Books
One night in September, three hundred people crowded into the basement auditorium of an office tower in Beijing to hear a discussion between two of China’s most popular writers. One was Liu Yu, a thirty-eight-year-old political scientist and blogger...

Travels with My Censor

New Yorker
China’s reading public has begun to discover nonfiction books about China by foreigners.

Viewpoint

10.14.14

On Dealing with Chinese Censors

Joseph W. Esherick
It was a hot afternoon in June in the East China city of Jinan. I was returning to my hotel after an afternoon coffee, thinking of the conference I had come to attend and trying to escape the heat on the shady side of the street. My cell phone rang...

Sinica Podcast

05.03.14

Shoptalk on Publishing

Jeremy Goldkorn, Alice Xin Liu & more from Sinica Podcast
This week on Sinica, Jeremy Goldkorn is pleased to be joined by two people navigating the English-language publishing industry as it involves China: Alice Xin Liu, Editor of Pathlight magazine, and Karen Ma, first-time author of the well-received...

Publisher of Book Critical of China’s Leader Is Arrested

Chris Buckley
New York Times
Yiu Mantin, a retired engineer from Hong Kong, had plans to distribute a withering denunciation of Xi Jinping. 

Sinica Podcast

03.22.13

Unsavory Elements and Earnshaw Press

Kaiser Kuo
No, this week’s Sinica isn’t an attack on Element Fresh. Rather, it’s a discussion hosted by Kaiser Kuo about the new book Unsavory Elements, an anthology of stories and essays about the experiences of expats in China. And joining us for this...

China, at Party Congress, Touts its Cultural Advances

Ian Johnson
New York Times
Party guidance is the "soul” of China's moves to privitize and promote industries that can spread soft power abroad. ...

Me and My Censor

Eveline Chao
Foreign Policy
Like any editor in the United States, I tweaked articles, butted heads with the sales department, and tried to extract interesting quotes out of boring people. Unlike my American counterparts, however, I was offered red envelopes stuffed with cash...

Taiwanese Mega Bookstore Causes Frenzy in Hong Kong

Chieh-Ting Yeh
As any self-respecting booklover in Taipei knows, you can immerse yourself in the endless variety of glossy printed books at the Eslite Bookstore on Dunhua South Road. 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Moreover, the flagship store near Taipei 101...

Fashion Magazines Laden With Ads Thriving

CHRISTINE HAUGHNEY and JONATHAN...
New York Times
While fashion labels are spending more on magazine advertising in the United States, they’re pouring even more money into magazines across mainland China.

Has China’s Young Jedi Knight Just Joined the Dark Side?

Xiaoying Zhou
Has China’s most famous blogger finally been brought to heel? Han Han, writer, car racer, and China’s youth opinion leader, recently sealed a deal with massive Chinese Internet company Tencent and founded an e-journal, “One.”

Finding Zen and Book Contracts in Beijing

Ian Johnson from New York Review of Books
It’s a Sunday afternoon and Beijing’s biggest bookstore is preparing for a major event: the launch of a new book by a bestselling American author, who will be on hand for the occasion. Six-foot banners on the sidewalk out front announce the talk,...

Bringing Censors to the Book Fair

Jonathan Mirsky from New York Review of Books
When I arrived at the London Book Fair on Monday, I saw a huge sign outside showing a cute Chinese boy holding an open book with the words underneath him: “China: Market Focus.” The special guest of this year’s fair was the Chinese Communist Party’s...

Out of School

02.29.12

A New China Website Helps Dissertations Find Readers

Maura Cunningham
Dissertations dominate the lives of doctoral students. A PhD candidate spends years researching, writing, and editing his or her dissertation, inching toward the day when the whole process is finished. Finally, he or she can leave behind the nagging...