Evil’s First Soft Touches: Uyghur “Re-Education” in China

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

Shadow of Cultural Revolution: Review of《故园的背影》

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》

Sounding the Environmental Alarm on the Belt and Road Initiative

QI HANG CHEN tackles the sprawling environmental implications of China’s Belt and Road Initiative. China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has the prerequisite elements for a massive environmental and climatic disaster. China’s pivot to green domestic policies has obscured the exportation of its environmentally damaging excesses abroad, in what is known as “shadow ecology”. While we must acknowledge China’s efforts to “green” the BRI through legal … Continue reading Sounding the Environmental Alarm on the Belt and Road Initiative

A War of Visibility: Contradictions in China’s Environmental Policy

JASMINE GAN contextualizes China’s environmental progress. On October 10, 2018, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change urged governments to recognize the drastic trajectory of the climate in a special report, “Global Warming of 1.5°C”. To contain global warming to 1.5°C (2.7°F) above pre-industrial levels, the world needs to cut down carbon emissions at unprecedented levels: essentially halving emissions by 2030 and eliminating them entirely by 2050. … Continue reading A War of Visibility: Contradictions in China’s Environmental Policy

Dry China: The Ticking Time Bomb of Water Scarcity

JACK MORGANJONES analyzes a ticking time bomb in China: water scarcity. The consensus among foreign policy experts is that the threat of water wars should not be overstated.  Historically, there have been remarkably few examples of violent conflicts over water. In the 20th century, those which did occur were mostly between Israel and its immediate neighbors, suggesting that the root causes cannot simply be attributed to water. Moreover, a study from … Continue reading Dry China: The Ticking Time Bomb of Water Scarcity

The Chinese Effort in Gravitational Wave Detection: The Bid for Leadership

Gravitational waves, as “ripples” of the space-time, were predicted by Einstein more than a century ago. As a new way of observing the universe, the detection of gravitational waves may unveil a lot of mysteries, such as the nature of spacetime and the properties of black holes. In 2003, when young Caltech Ph.D. Chen Yanbei went back to China to give a talk on gravitational … Continue reading The Chinese Effort in Gravitational Wave Detection: The Bid for Leadership

Truth, Happiness, and Understanding: Applying Traditional Chinese Thought to the Modern World

It is often difficult at first glance to see how the ancient thought of China is relevant to the vast, global metropolises that constitute China of the 21st century, and yet it is only through understanding a culture’s past that one can hope to understand its future. In addressing the question of historical progress, of what constitutes an enlightened and robust civil society, we must … Continue reading Truth, Happiness, and Understanding: Applying Traditional Chinese Thought to the Modern World

Stranger in His Homeland: Chinese Disdain for Ai Weiwei

A sea of sunflower seeds covers the floor, their grey-black millions blanketing the grand hall of the Tate Modern art gallery. Once, you could walk barefoot on the bed of seeds, the enormity of the 500 by 75 square feet Turbine Hall before you, as light filtered gently from the 524 glass panels above you. These are not your average sunflower seeds but “seeds” crafted … Continue reading Stranger in His Homeland: Chinese Disdain for Ai Weiwei

Commercial Films with Chinese Characteristics

“We have achieved great progress in the construction of ideology and culture,” President Xi Jinping declared in the opening speech at the recent Chinese Communist Party’s 19th Party Congress. “The main theme is louder, the positive energy is stronger, and the confidence in our culture is reinforced!” Such a claim might not be an overstatement of the Chinese Communist Party’s recent success in promoting its … Continue reading Commercial Films with Chinese Characteristics

Sowing Change in Chinese Produce

On any Saturday between 10am and 2pm, the basement of the Dreamport Shopping Mall in Haidian, Beijing is transformed from overflow space into Beijing’s only organic farmers market. Since the market’s founding in 2010, locals have filled the stalls searching for fresh fruits or vegetables, eager to eat produce grown locally and without additives or pesticides. In a country that has been rocked by a … Continue reading Sowing Change in Chinese Produce