Media

03.20.15

China Has Its Own Anti-Vaxxers—Blame the Internet

Alexa Olesen
While health officials in the United States and parts of Europe wrestle with a growing anti-vaccination, or “anti-vaxxer” movement, China is dealing with a less organized but similarly serious fear of immunizations. Social media reveals traces of...

Chinese High School Students Riot Over Mass Food Poisoning

Wei Ling
Radio Free Asia
Thousands of disgruntled students smashed up their high school campus in Guizhou in the early hours of March 20 .

Conversation

03.18.15

Dark Days for Women in China?

Rebecca E. Karl, Leta Hong Fincher & more
With China’s recent criminal detention of five feminist activists, gender inequality in China is back in the spotlight. What does a crackdown on Chinese women fighting for equal representation say about the current state of the nation’s political...

U.S. Students Losing Interest in China as Dream Jobs Prove Elusive

Alexandra Harney
Reuters
Waning interest worries those who view having Americans who speak Chinese as a matter of national interest.

China Celebrates International Women’s Day By Arresting Women’s Rights Activists

Matthew Sheehan
Huffington Post
Many women’s rights groups activists who also work on LGBT issues have gone into hiding.

Henan Delegates Protest Inequality in University Admissions

Chris Buckley
New York Times
Henan people say big cities are given preferential consideration for education funds and places in universities.

Environment

03.05.15

Beijing Says Panda Population Up 17%, But Experts Doubtful

from chinadialogue
China's claims that its population of wild giant pandas rose around 17% in just over a decade are being disputed by some experts, who point out that the latest census was over a much wider area than the previous one.The giant panda, a global...

Media

03.04.15

The Other China

Michael Meyer & Ian Buruma
Writers Michael Meyer and Ian Buruma engage in a discussion co-sponsored by The New York Review of Books centered on Meyer’s new book, In Manchuria: A Village Called Wasteland and the Transformation of Rural China, which combines immersion...

Conversation

03.03.15

Why Has This Environmental Documentary Gone Viral on China’s Internet?

Angel Hsu, Michael Zhao & more
[Updated: March 6,  2015] Our friends at Foreign Policy hit the nail on the head by headlining writer Yiqin Fu's Monday story "China's National Conversation about Pollution Has Finally Begun." What happened? Well, in the...

Travels with My Censor

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

Chinese Babies Should be Trained to Play Football—President Xi

BBC
BBC
Beijing has approved the country's "football reform plan," and says being good at soccer is the "ardent wish of the whole nation."...

Civic Groups’ Freedom, and Followers, Are Vanishing

Chris Buckley
New York Times
Accepted activities are narrowing, sparking fear that openness in the political landscape may disappear.

China’s Feminists Stand up Against ‘Misogynistic’ TV Gala

Simon Denyer and Xu Yangjingjing
Washington Post
The most widely watched television show on earth was peppered with jokes at the expense of women.

China Starts Massive Promotion of Xi Jinping’s Political Theory the ‘Four Comprehensives’

Mandy Zuo and Agence France Presse
South China Morning Post
Xi has created a slogan and formulated principles to guide his style of government.

Sobering News Out of China, Part 4 Million

Atlantic
Chronicles of a country walling itself off.

The China-Russia NGO Crackdown

Julia Famularo
Diplomat
Authorities in both countries apparently aim to cripple NGOs with foreign patrons or partners.

Chinese Studies at the University of Botswana

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
It’s long been said that while China may have an Africa policy, Africans do not have a China policy. In particular, too many Africans do not understand the language, culture, and politics of their new number one trading partner. The University of...

Ringing In the Lunar New Year, Whatever It’s Called

Chris Buckley
New York Times
Because Han Chinese culture developed in regions where herders and goats prevailed, many think the zodiac talisman must be a goat.

Soft Recruits Hinder China’s Military Modernization

Jane Perlez
New York Times
Many of China's army conscripts have been raised as spoiled children of the one-child policy and need toughening up, a RAND report says. ...

Conversation

02.12.15

Is Mao Still Dead?

Rebecca E. Karl, Michael Schoenhals & more
It has long been standard operating procedure for China’s leaders to pay tribute to Mao. Even as the People’s Republic he wrought has embraced capitalist behavior with ever more heated ardor, the party he founded has remained firmly in power and his...

China’s Internet Censorship Anthem Is Revealed, Then Deleted

Paul Mozur
New York Times
Cyberspace Administration employees Sang lines like, “An Internet power: Tell the world that the Chinese Dream is uplifting China.”

China’s Wealthy Parents Are Fed Up With State-Run Education

Helen Gao
Foreign Policy
Forget rote memorization and pressure-packed tests—Western, alternative learning is the new rage.

Parent Meddling Makes for Unmerry Marriages in China

Laurie Burkitt
Wall Street Journal
"Parental matchmaking is robustly correlated with lower marital harmony,” says a new World Bank report...

China Tells Schools to Suppress Western Ideas, With One Big Exception

Dan Levin
New York Times
Some teachers and students reject the idea that foreign pedagogy and textbooks pose a threat to the government.

China Says No Room for ‘Western Values’ in University Education

Agence France-Presse
Education minister says books which ‘smear socialism’ will be banned.

Conversation

01.29.15

Is China’s Internet Becoming an Intranet?

George Chen, Charlie Smith & more
With Astrill and several other free and paid-subscription virtual private networks (VPNs) that make leaping China’s Great Firewall possible now harder to use themselves after government interference "gummed" them up, the world wide web...

Environment

01.28.15

China to Appoint Academic as New Environment Minister

from chinadialogue
The head of Beijing’s Tsinghua University is likely to be appointed to the top environmental job in in China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection, according to reports, as the country’s leadership moves to defuse public anger about worsening air,...

Study Examines How Overseas Chinese Students Respond to Criticism of Their Country

Elizabeth Redden
Inside Higher Ed
Do conversations between domestic and foreign students result in mutual understanding and friendly feelings?

American Film On A Tibetan Migrant Finds Unlikely Success In China

Frank Langfitt
NPR
Journalist Jocelyn Ford spent years documenting the life of Zanta, a Tibetan migrant who fled her poor, mountain village to build a life for herself and her son in Beijing.

Inside a Chinese Test-Prep Factory

Brook Larmer
New York Times
One minute later, at precisely 11:45, the stillness was shattered. Thousands of teenagers swarmed out of the towering front gate of Maotanchang High School. Many of them wore identical black-and-white Windbreakers emblazoned with the slogan, in...

Other

12.30.14

A Look Back at 2014

It’s hard to believe, but ChinaFile is almost two years old. It’s been an exciting year for us, and, as ever, an eventful year for China. It was a year of muscular leadership from Xi Jinping, who has now been in office just over two years and who...

Infographics

12.15.14

Is Studying Abroad Worth the Cost?

from Sohu
The number of Chinese students who choose to study abroad has increased by more than 1,000% since 2000. Yet education costs abroad also continue to rise. This infographic looks at reasons why Chinese students are choosing an education overseas.

Xi Jinping: The Growing Cult of China’s ‘Big Daddy Xi’

Tom Phillips
Telegraph
The construction of a cult of personality around president Xi represents a dramatic direction change for a country that sought to rule collectively after the devastation wrought during Chairman Mao's three-decade monopoly on power...

Teachers’ Strikes Spread Across Northeast China

Edward Wong
New York Times
Teachers are asking for raises and for the government to end a requirement that teachers make payments to a pension plan as part of an experimental policy. China National Radio reported that one teacher was making less than $400 a month after...

A Career in China-Africa Research

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
Dr. Yoon Jung Park is among the most well-known Sino-Africa scholars in the field. Park has taught and done research on China-African affairs for over 20 years at universities in both the U.S. and Africa. Now based in Washington, D.C., where she co-...

China’s Rich Want to Send Children Abroad for Education

Xinhua
China Daily
The report said that some 80 percent of the country's rich people have plans to send children abroad, the highest ratio in the world. By contrast, Japan has less than 1 percent and Germany has less than 10 percent of its rich people having such...

Media

11.20.14

The Invisible Candidate in Taiwan’s Elections

Almost 80 percent of Taiwan, an island of 23 million off the coast of China, is expected to head to the polls November 29 to vote in local elections with more than 11,000 seats up for grabs. Voters will choose candidates ranging from mayors in...

Newspaper Calls on Chinese Academics to Cut the Criticism

Austin Ramzy
New York Times
Liaoning Daily, a Communist Party-run newspaper in northeast China, published the article, “Teacher, Please Don’t Talk About China Like That: An Open Letter to Teachers of Philosophy and Social Science,” last week in response to a comment it...

Is China’s Grand Ethnic Experiment Working?

David McKenzie
BBC
In a gleaming classroom at Chong Hua High School in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin, students peer at onion slices under microscopes. Their biology teacher calls on Abdurrahman Mamat to explain what he sees."Plasmolysis," he replies...

Manual on How to Spot a Spy Circulates in an Increasingly Wary China

Didi Kirsten Tatlow
New York Times
“On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.” Or an American spy. Or a “hostile foreign force.” So says the “China Folk Counterespionage Manual,” a “how to spot a spy” guide circulating on the Internet.

Media

10.21.14

Chinese Doubt Their Own Soft Power Venture

On September 27, Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong read aloud a letter written by President Xi Jinping at a ceremony in Beijing celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Confucius Institute (CI) program, an international chain of academic centers...

Environment

10.09.14

Locals Attack Factory After Children Poisoned with Lead

from chinadialogue
Villagers from the township of Gangkou in Jiangxi province, southeast China, have smashed up a new lead recycling plant which was due to begin operating.Unconvinced by reassurances from the owners and local government that there would be no...

Penn State Latest School to Drop China’s Confucius Institute

Douglas Belkin
Wall Street Journal
The action signals increasing discontent on university campuses over the institutes' hiring practices and refusal to acknowledge unflattering chapters of Chinese history...

Environment

10.02.14

China ‘Not Ready to be a World Leader’ on Climate Change

from chinadialogue
The U.N. Climate Summit 2014 in New York last week passed, as expected, with public statements of intent but no sign of firm commitments to reducing climate emissions.If a deal is to be reached in Paris next year, at the latest “last hope” climate...

Conversation

10.01.14

Is This the End of Hong Kong As We Know It?

Nicholas Bequelin, Sebastian Veg & more
Over the past week, tens of thousands of Hong Kong people have occupied the streets of their semi-autonomous city to advocate for the democratic elections slated to launch in 2017. The pro-democracy protestors have blocked major roads in the...

The Revolution Will Not Be Instagrammed

Alexa Olesen
Mainland Chinese felt no effects from the protests roiling Hong Kong—until Beijing pulled the plug on another social network.

Books

09.24.14

A Chinaman’s Chance

Eric Liu
From Tony Hsieh to Amy Chua to Jeremy Lin, Chinese Americans are now arriving at the highest levels of American business, civic life, and culture. But what makes this story of immigrant ascent unique is that Chinese Americans are emerging at just the same moment when China has emerged—and indeed may displace America—at the center of the global scene. What does it mean to be Chinese American in this moment? And how does exploring that question alter our notions of just what an American is and will be? In many ways, Chinese Americans today are exemplars of the American Dream: during a crowded century and a half, this community has gone from indentured servitude, second-class status and outright exclusion to economic and social integration and achievement. But this narrative obscures too much: the Chinese Americans still left behind, the erosion of the American Dream in general, the emergence—perhaps—of a Chinese Dream, and how other Americans will look at their countrymen of Chinese descent if China and America ever become adversaries. As Chinese Americans reconcile competing beliefs about what constitutes success, virtue, power, and purpose, they hold a mirror up to their country in a time of deep flux. In searching, often personal essays that range from the meaning of Confucius to the role of Chinese Americans in shaping how we read the Constitution to why he hates the hyphen in "Chinese-American," Eric Liu pieces together a sense of the Chinese American identity in these auspicious years for both countries. He considers his own public career in American media and government; his daughter's efforts to hold and release aspects of her Chinese inheritance; and the still-recent history that made anyone Chinese in America seem foreign and disloyal until proven otherwise. Provocative, often playful but always thoughtful, Liu breaks down his vast subject into bite-sized chunks, along the way providing insights into universal matters: identity, nationalism, family, and more. —PublicAffairs {chop}

Q. and A.: Yong Zhao on Education and Authoritarianism in China

Didi Kirsten Tatlow
New York Times
Yong Zhao, a professor of education at the University of Oregon, is the author of "Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon: Why China Has the Best (and Worst) Education System in the World.”...

Caixin Media

09.08.14

Gaokao, China’s National College Exam, to Carry Less Weight

The Ministry of Education announced reforms on September 4 that will lessen the weight that the gaokao, the country's national college entrance exam, carries for university enrollment. The changes are to come into effect by 2020.The...

For Australia, a Celebration of China in Theme Park Form

Bree Feng
New York Times
Get ready for Chappypie China Time, a $500 million, 39-acre Chinese culture theme park that aims to bring Australia a replica of the Forbidden City.

Will China Vet Hong Kong Election?

Robert Marquand
Christian Science Monitor
The occupation of Hong Kong's central financial district could start early next week, after Beijing releases its guidelines Sunday on how the city's next leader will be elected...

Sport in China: What’s Wrong with Winning?

Kristy Lu Stout
CNN
China has a fixation on training elite champions in select sports and an education system that considers sports a luxury and not a priority.

Mao’s Little Red Book, Meet Xi Jinping’s Collected Speeches

Te-Ping Chen
Wall Street Journal
Since its publication not quite two months ago, the somewhat turgidly named “A Reader of General-Secretary Xi Jinping’s Important Speeches” has already sold 10 million copies, its publisher reports.

Features

08.14.14

Making It in China and the U.S.

Jonathan Landreth & Emily Parker
Emily Parker is a creator of Green Electronics: A U.S.-China Maker Challenge. The Green Electronics Challenge was an unprecedented collaboration between the New America Foundation, Arizona State University, Slate Magazine, China’s Tsinghua...

My Chinese Education

Tsering Woeser
New York Times
One Tibetan recounts how Beijing’s education system suffocates minority culture serving to unify the country under the rule of the dominant Han ethnic group. 

Conversation

08.11.14

Simon Leys Remembered

Isabel Hilton, Perry Link & more
Isabel Hilton: When I heard the news of the death of Pierre Ryckmans, better known by his pen name, Simon Leys, I began to hunt in my bookshelves for the now yellowing and grimy copies of Chinese Shadows and The Chairman’s New Clothes: Mao and the...

China Sees Boom in Illegal Surrogate Motherhood

Ian Johnson and Cao Li
New York Times
Rising infertility and a relaxation of the one-child policy have given rise to a booming black market in surrogacy that experts say produces well over 10,000 births a year.

Zhang Tiesheng: From Leftist Hero to Multimillionaire

Tania Branigan
Guardian
Zhang was 22 when he came to national attention in 1973, after he wrote to leaders excoriating the examination as a return to the capitalist model of education. Now 63, he is a major shareholder in the publicly-traded Wellhope Agri-Tech.

Helping China’s Doves

Kishore Mahbubani
New York Times
Since Beijing wants to focus on domestic problems the international community should ask itself one simple question: What can we do to help the doves?