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Environment

03.04.2015

Clearing Skies

Adam Minter

After dark is when the pollution arrives on the outskirts of Shanghai. On a bright night, when moonlight refracts through the smog, you can see black clouds of soot pouring out of small workshop smokestacks silhouetted against the sky. In...

Media

03.03.2015

The Word That Broke the Chinese Internet

Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian

It might be gibberish, but it’s also a sign of the times. The word duang, pronounced “dwong,” is spreading like wildfire throughout China’s active Internet—even though 1.3 billion Chinese people still haven’t figured out what it means. In...

Media

02.23.2015

Five Predictions for Chinese Censorship in the Year of the Sheep

Blocked websites, jailed journalists, and nationalist rhetoric have long been features of the Chinese Communist Party’s media control strategy. During the Year of the Horse, which just ended on China’s lunar calendar, President Xi Jinping...

Culture

02.20.2015

‘Still Not Married?’ A Graphic Guide to Surviving Chinese New Year

Roseann Lake

Maya Hong is a Beijing transplant from a small town outside of Harbin, the icy city not far from China’s border with Siberia. Though proud of her glacial origins and skilled at combating subzero temperatures, over the years Hong, 30, has...

Viewpoint

02.20.2015

Major China Apple Supplier Pays Workers Less Than Foxconn

Jonathan Landreth, Kevin Slaten

Apple, the world’s most beloved maker of sleek mobile phones, powerful personal computers, and slim portable music players recently reported record profits—money a new report from the New York-based nongovernmental organization China Labor...

Is Chinese Corporate Behavior Improving in Africa?

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden, Witney Schneidman

The list of grievances against Chinese companies operating in Africa is long and varied, from violations of labor rights to environmental destruction to widespre

Media

02.19.2015

Why 700 Million People Keep Watching the Chinese New Year Gala, Even Though It’s Terrible

Rachel Lu

The Chinese New Year Gala, which aired live on February 18 on Chinese Central Television (CCTV), is a four-and-half hour variety show with song and dance, comedic skits, magic tricks, acrobatic acts, and celebrity cameos. The show...

Sinica Podcast

02.16.2015

Business and F*cking in China

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn, James Palmer

This week’s show starts with us grilling James on “what you have to do to be part of Chinese business culture” and descends from there into stories of the sort of booze-and-ketamine-fuelled business deal-making that seems to consist...

Conversation

02.12.2015

Is Mao Still Dead?

Rebecca E. Karl, Michael Schoenhals, Andrew J. Nathan, Richard Bernstein, Ho-fung Hung, Sebastian Heilmann , Roderick MacFarquhar, Jude Blanchette, Taisu Zhang, Richard H. Solomon, Suisheng Zhao, Stanley Lubman, Robert Kapp, The Editors

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...

Media

02.10.2015

Chinese Corruption, Now Officially Hilarious

Rachel Lu

Corruption is finally funny—at least, according to the Chinese Communist Party. That’s because comedic performances in the upcoming February 18 performance of China’s annual New Year Gala, a variety show on China Central Television (CCTV)...

Sinica Podcast

02.09.2015

The Changing Look of China, Myanmar, and Visual Journalism—A Chat With Jonah Kessel

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn, Jonah Kessel

This week on Sinica, Jeremy and Kaiser are joined by Jonah M. Kessel, former freelance photographer and now full-time videographer for The New York Times who has covered a wide range of China stories, traveled widely through the country,...

China: Inventing a Crime

Perry Link

In late January, Chinese authorities announced that they are considering formal charges against Pu Zhiqiang, one of China’s most prominent human rights lawyers, who has been in detention since last May. Pu’s friends fear that even a life...

Environment

02.05.2015

Parched Beijing’s Olympics Bid Based on Fake Snow

Where better for a Winter Olympic Games than famously arid north China? Drought and a fast growing economy have created water shortages so severe that China’s government has spent more than a decade, and up to U.S.$80 billion, constructing...

Media

02.05.2015

Why Chinese Promote Confining New Mothers for a Month

Rachel Lu

HONG KONG—Giving birth is never easy, but for new Chinese mothers the month following a baby’s arrival is particularly fraught. Immediately after I became pregnant for the first time, I started to hear about zuoyuezi, or “sitting the month...

Viewpoint

02.04.2015

Why China Is Banning Islamic Veils

Timothy Grose , James Leibold

This week, regional authorities outlawed Islamic veils from all public spaces in the regional capital of China’s Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR). The Urumqi ban, which went into effect on Sunday February 1 (coincidentally the...

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