ZHEYAN NI reviews the excellent historical work《追寻新共和：张东荪早期思想与活动研究 1886-1932》(The Search for a New Republic: A Study on Thoughts and Activities of Zhang Dongsun at His Early Age 1880-1932) published in 2018. To historians of Modern China, Zhang Dongsun cannot be more familiar. Yet outside of academia, he is almost unknown by the general public. Highly politicized historical narratives of twentieth century China only canonized winning or … Continue reading The Forgotten Fusionist: Review of《追寻新共和：张东荪早期思想与活动研究 1886-1932》
JOE WU evaluates the evidence against Huawei and whether provable security concerns justify targeting Huawei and potentially fracturing the global telecommunications order. On December 1st, 2018, Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou was detained in Vancouver on suspicions that Huawei had violated economic sanctions on Iran. The unsealed indictment revealed additional allegations charging Huawei with obstructing justice and stealing technology. If the allegations are proven and the … Continue reading Entangled in Huawei?
ANGELA LU details China’s massive internment of Uyghurs in “re-education camps,” as well as the international response and China’s subsequent tactical revisions. Since April 2017, as many as 1 million Uyghurs and members of other Muslim ethnic minority groups have been indefinitely detained in an ever-expanding secretive network of extrajudicial re-education camps across Xinjiang province. China’s rulers have long held a deep suspicion of Xinjiang’s ethnic … Continue reading Evil’s First Soft Touches: Uyghur “Re-Education” in China
SHARON LI analyzes the Chinese government’s extensive use and potential abuse of blockchain technology in the context of Beijing’s opposition towards cryptocurrency. As the mayhem around bitcoin has begun to die down in the United States, the record-keeping technology behind it—blockchain—still surges forward. In China, this is no exception. The most basic definition of blockchain calls it a “distributed, decentralized, public ledger”; in other words, … Continue reading Blockchain: Rising Tide or Binding Fetters for the Next China?
ZHEYAN NI reviews the gripping generational memoir《故园的背影》(Retreating Figures in the Garden of the Past) published in 2018. Guyuan de Beiying 《故园的背影》(Retreating Figures in the Garden of the Past) consists of a series of memoirs written by Chinese students enrolled at Hunan Normal University in the early 1980s who later moved abroad to study and work in the United States. These stories vividly portray the authors’ memories … Continue reading Shadow of Cultural Revolution: Review of《故园的背影》
SHARON LI does a deep dive into China’s surveillance development and its domestic and global implications. As China races towards establishing itself as the world’s leading technology superpower, new developments in advanced technology have seen large-scale integration on the state level, particularly within the expanding presence of the country’s surveillance state. In previous decades, surveillance has largely been limited to vast sets of video footage … Continue reading Eye Spy: Chinese Surveillance and the Dawn of Digital Authoritarianism
JEFFREY FU chronicles China’s grid technology development in response to doubts about China’s capacity for government-driven domestic innovation. U.S. President Donald Trump frequently alleges that China engages in state-sponsored intellectual property theft. To strengthen his accusations, he draws on the age-old narrative that China lacks the capacity for domestic innovation due to a combination of ineffective government policy and a culture of “rule-bound rote learners.” … Continue reading No IP Theft, No Problem: China’s Cutting-Edge Grid Technology
QI HANG CHEN analyzes the Belt and Road Initiative five years after its announcement to gauge the early economic, environmental, and strategic returns. Introduction The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), also known as One Belt, One Road (OBOR), is China’s most ambitious infrastructure development project. It is also the largest overseas investment plan by any single country, dwarfing the Marshall Plan in comparison. It will have … Continue reading China’s Gamble of the Century: Five Years into the Belt and Road Initiative
JEFFREY FU revisits the South China Sea dispute to explore how the interplay of international law, economic power, and territorial ambition may be transforming China’s strategy. On September 30, 2018, a Chinese Luyang-class destroyer cut across the bow of an American destroyer, the USS Decatur, coming within 45 yards of collision before the Decatur maneuvered to avoid catastrophe. Such brazen disregard for maritime safety and American … Continue reading Destroyers and Islands: The South China Sea and China’s New Strategy Abroad
ZHEYAN NI delves into Xi Jinping’s past to explain the present. In 1994, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s closest political aide and political strategist Wang Huning wrote in his diary, “Deng Xiaoping is practical and flexible while Mao Zedong is ambitious and idealistic.” Xi Jinping is trying to become both: a practical idealist leader of China. The highest figure of power in China always has a dual … Continue reading Enlightened Despot? Hybrid Legacy of Mao and Deng