Category Archives: civil society

My nostalgic view on Spring Festival – Zhang Lijia

Much of China and many Chinese have become wealthy. But just a few decades ago, remembers author Zhang Lijia of “Socialism Is Great!”: A Worker’s Memoir of the New China Spring Festival was the only moment in the year where food was abundant. At her website, she looks with a nostalgic view at those poorer times.

In China, politics is crucial for business – Shaun Rein

China has become a politicized society, and countries and businesses can only ignore politics at their own peril. That is one of the key messages of political analyst Shaun Rein’s book The War for China’s Wallet: Profiting from the New World Order, and at the China Economic Review, he explains how that – in his view – works.

Why Beijing and the Vatican are eager to close a deal – Ian Johnson

Despite fierce opposition, both the Vatican and the central government in Beijing seem very eager to sign a deal on reestablishing diplomatic relations. Journalist Ian Johnson, who broke the story end January, and author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao tries to figure out why both a so eager to push ahead, he tells at PRI. The real issue for both is about social control, he says.

Star Wars missing a following in China – Ben Cavender

Box office revenue for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, was beaten by a local romantic movie, showing US movies do not automatically win in China. US classics to not have the following in China, they have at home, says business analyst Ben Cavender to CNBC. 

Religion: a way to restore some order in China – Ian Johnson

The less-than straightforward relation between China’s communist rulers and religion is one of the complicated concepts author Ian Johnson of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao tries to explain. From repression, to tolerance and now moving to a idea to use religion to restore some order, that relationship has changed profoundly, he tells The Politic, although it varies depending on what religion you look at.

Our left-behind children – Zhang Lijia

Millions of migrant workers left behind their children in their home villages, developing mostly unheard problems. Author Zhang Lijia, who earlier published Lotus: A Novel on prostitution in China, is now working on a book on this hidden drama, including epidemic suicide, and she started publishing their stories in the South China Morning Post.

Censorship does not impede China’s innovation – Kaiser Kuo

Western observers wrongly assume that China’s rigid censorship is stopping the country from being innovative. As China is becoming a leader in global innovation, that misunderstanding should be dealt with, says China veteran and former Baidu communication director Kaiser Kuo to Time about Baidu’s CEO Robin Li.

Why the sex industry boomed in China – Zhang Lijia

Author Zhang Lijia of Lotus: A Novel, a book on prostitution in China, divided into the current sex industry and explains to Brave Media why it boomed. Earnings can be ten times as high compared to a factory job, she says.

Meeting controversial artist Qiu Zhijie – Ian Johnson

Author Ian Johnson of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao meets controversial artist Qiu Zhijie for the New York Review of Books.Before the interview, Ian Johnson puts Qiu and their first meetings into perspective. Here is the introduction of the interview.

Market economy eroded gender equality – Zhang Lijia

Women have been bearing most of the burden of China’s shift from state economy to market economy, says author Zhang Lijia of Lotus: A Novel, on prostitution in China, at the BBC World Service. Despite a lot of advantages, women suffered severe setbacks. State owned companies let women go at 45 years of age, and getting hired at the sexist job market has been harder than ever, she adds. “Some refuse to hire women at a child-bearing age.”