Cast of Beijing’s ‘Art’ premier talk success, censorship, sandwiches

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The first authorized English production of Yasmina Reza’s Art begins its four-day Beijing run from tonight, May 11. Since the London premiere of Christopher Hampton’s translation, with Albert Finney, Tom Courtenay and Ken Stott as the three principals, Marc, Serge and Yvan, Art has raked in over $250 million worldwide, showcased innumerable all-star lineups, stunt... Read more » Read more »

Rock Off: Briefly memorializing Sanlitun’s best and only punk-rock dive bar

There was a restaurant? (Pic via Thats)
Up a rickety staircase, above a neglected sex shop, there they were: some of the laziest and most disinterested barkeeps in Beijing. But now they’ve disappeared, along with the rest of 3 Rock, a hole of a rock bar that encapsulated the punk spirit of Sanlitun’s “dirty bar street” – something best loved when it’s... Read more » Read more »

Forbes editor gets drunk, posts dreadful China article

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Strange to imagine there was once a time when Forbes had a Beijing correspondent. A time of dragons. “Ancient times.” Yesterday, an editor at the venerable in-flight magazine of Trump Airlines published an article by one of its many, many, many useless contributors entitled ‘China Expert: I’m Drunk,’ in which the author has a chin-stroker... Read more » Read more »

Dispatches From Xinjiang: Uyghur Urbanism in Recent Modernist Poetry

Uyghur Urbanism
A good while ago the anthropologist Stevan Harrell asked me to consider the unique position of Uyghurs as heirs to an urbanism that predates the rise of Chinese cities in the region. He asked me to think through the ways in which this urban tradition has affected Uyghur social organization. I’m still thinking about this. Read more »

New Rules: How China’s Latest Laws For Foreign Media Affect Us And You

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As some readers may be aware, new measures restricting foreign content online in China (or “Administrative Regulations for Online Publishing Services”) are dropping March 10 – today. Over at China Law Blog, Steve Dickinson has answers to most of the major players and questions, but we felt obliged to follow up with Steve on a... Read more » Read more »

Mega Fail: How A Bestselling American Futurist Lost His Way In China

The Naisbitts with Ken and Tenniel Chu at the world's largest golf resort, where the seminar took place
Kneeling over the toilet at the clubhouse of the “largest golf course in the world,” I’m furiously vomiting gray liquid. It is, most likely, the result of dodgy alcohol from the previous night; then again, it might be the 90-minute speech I just heard from the husband-and-wife American “futurists” as they remorselessly praised China again and again and again. Hard to tell. Read more »

Ursula Gauthier Wrote A Bad Article, And In China That’s A Crime

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Ursula Gauthier, erstwhile Beijing correspondent for the French newsweekly L’Obs, left China for good in the early hours of January 1. It was not, as they say, of her own volition. When the clock struck midnight on 2015, Gauthier’s press visa expired and was not up for renewal. According to official organs, she had offended the Chinese people with her November 18 article written in the aftermath of the November 13 terrorist attacks on Paris. Gauthier’s refusal to publicly apologize for remarks concerning China’s attempts to link Paris with its own problems in Xinjiang was taken as the final straw. Read more »

Sorry, We’re Closed: The Den Shuts It Down

A Russian man expresses his love of The Den
Since 1997 in Beijing, it’s been possible to answer “Where can I get a really nasty Old Fashioned and a 900-gram burger at 5am?” “Who’s showing the goat-wrestling qualifiers?” and “What happened to your phone?” with the same words: The Den. Last weekend, that all changed. According to the Beijinger magazine, quoting someone’s WeChat, the city’s only 24-hour all-in-one sports bar, restaurant, short-time hotel, crisis-counseling centre, divorced men’s networking club, Pattaya tribute venue and dipsomaniacal dog whistle is closing. Read more »

Dispatches From Xinjiang: Uyghurs And “Terrorism”

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In a recent article James Leibold, a scholar at La Trobe University in Australia, discussed the way ethnic minority struggles against police and structural violence has often been officially mislabeled "terrorism." At the same time, in China, as in the United States, violent acts carried out by non-Muslims are read as acts of the deranged and mentally ill, but not as "terrorism." In China, as in the United States, the lives of Muslims which are lost as a result of “terrorist” or “counter-terrorism” efforts go unnoticed and unmourned. All losses of life leave gaping holes in our human social fabric, but why are some more grievable than others? What happens when a population is terrified by the discourse of terrorism? Read more »

Dispatches From Xinjiang: Uyghur Restaurant Eden Arrives In America To Mixed Reviews

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Back in April, signs of the famous Uyghur restaurant chain Herembağ (Eden) began to appear on the streets of San Francisco. A few months later, a location in Fremont was opened in a renovated hotpot restaurant with promises of a third Bay Area location in San Mateo. Like their restaurant locations from Beijing to Astana, Kazakhstan, the American version of Eden serves an upscale version of the traditional Uyghur pasta, lamb, and rice dishes, as well as Hui-inspired northwest specialties such as Big Plate Chicken (dapanji) and Turkish-style döner kebab. Read more »