Category Archives: politics

The complex face of religion in China – Ian Johnson

The Guardian praises Ian Johnson’s book The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao and his well-documented tour along Taoist musicians, rebel Christians and celebrity Zen Buddhists, and where the CCP is still firmly in charge.

Xi-Trump talks: a start at best – Tom Manning

US companies profit already a lot from the trade relations with China, says China veteran Tom Manning to CNBC and the country is already liberalizing its economy. Those will be the two arguments China’s Xi Jinping will bring into the meeting between presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping, Manning says. This meeting will be only a start of a relationship at best.

China’s return to soul-searching – Ian Johnson

China’s emerging religious experiences have often been misunderstood by the West, says author Ian Johnson of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao in an interview with the New York Times. “I think the government is happy to see these things grow—almost as a form of stability.”

Three CSB speakers made top-25 of best China books

Zhang Lijia, Ian Johnson and Howard French made it to the top-25 of China books of the Signature website of the US literary agency with the same name. The authors are praised, as they help to move away from the classic monolithic picture the West had from China.

Internet: China’s only public sphere – Kaiser Kuo

The internet in China has become the country’s public sphere, says China watcher Kaiser Kuo, former Baidu communication director, at the Paulson Institute. Despite blocked websites and government control, it is the place where netizens express their opinions and discuss.

Countering China’s narrative on its globalization – Howard French

Journalist Howard French’s book Everything Under the Heavens: How the Past Helps Shape China’s Push for Global Power is reviewed by the Globe&Mail. Key argument: French counters the Chinese narrative of a benevolent force, unlike the greedy Western colonizators. And on Trump: “When two emperors appear simultaneously, one must be destroyed.”

Where Xi Jinping has been failing – Ian Johnson

China annual political meetings passed without any great upheaval, but not all is well for president Xi Jinping, writes veteran journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao in the New York Review of Book. No legal reforms, no successor, and then there is the economy.

PBOC promises for fintech and startups – Andy Mok

Business analyst Andy Mok has nine take-away’s from this week’s central bank’s press conference. Fintech and startups got priority from the government, he writes in CGTN, and they prepare for global expansion. But domesticallly virtual currencies and digital payment systems are kept under control to avoid capital flight.

Jeffrey Towson: focus on China 2025

How does the world look like in 2025 when China and the Chinese continue to develop like they do now? After his well-received speech at LocWorld earlier this month, Beida business professor Jeffrey Towson started to focus his speeches on that subject:

Conflicting messages hurt business confidence – Shaun Rein

On one hand China tries to embark with “One Belt, One Road” on a massive global expansion. But financial limitations on the outflow of capital go against that. Those conflicting messages makes business people worried about what road to take, says business analyst Shaun Rein to the South China Morning Post.