Offbeat China has translated, in full, a Chinese adaptation of a popular fairy tale found in a children's book. The story is amazing, complete with amazing illustrations, and generally reads like an amazing version of a Brother Grimm tale, only funnier. Here's an excerpt:
Liao Yiwu was a fledging poet without a formal education, a hot-tempered philanderer prone to fights, a dreamer who actively despised politics -- until the early hours of June 4, 1989, when, from the living room of his home in the river town of Fuling, he listened with Canadian Michael Day to shortwave radio reports of Chinese troops opening fire on students around Tiananmen Square. "The bloody crackdown in Beijing was a turning point in history and also in my own life," he writes in his prison memoir For a Song and a Hundred Songs...
The problem with gringo lit about the gringo experience in China is it inevitably and unsubtlety reinforces the foreigner's sense of Otherness while feeding his inflated sense of importance. In doses this is not necessarily bad – it can be therapeutic to read, even for lesser voyeurs – but in bulk it becomes obnoxious, not least of which because it is both disingenuous and vapid to pretend that foreigners don't relish, if not secretly rejoice at, their entitled status as Other.
“From the moment we step foot in the Middle Kingdom,” editor Tom Carter writes in his introduction on the opening page of Unsavory Elements: Stories of Foreigners on the Loose in China, “foreigners are subjected to an extraordinary range of alien experiences, ranging from appalling to exquisite.” The use of passive voice – are subjected to – places the emphasis strictly on “foreigners,” who are subjects protraying themselves as objects, assailed. The next sentence begins – emphasis mine – “We contend with seething masses of humanity,” and it becomes abundantly clear who are the looked-upon They.
Google chairman Eric Schmidt has a new book ready to debut in April, The Digital Age, co-written by Jared Cohen, formerly of the State Department. As the Wall Street Journal puts it succinctly, the book is clear about one thing: “China is the most dangerous superpower on Earth.” Specifically, Schmidt writes that China’s hacking culture —... Read more »
Sun Tzu's The Art of War has been around for more than 2,000 years, and it may be a timeless classic, but it's about time it got a reboot.
Enter Kelly Roman, whose graphic novel The Art of War is set in a dystopian future and samples from the ancient military treatise. Explains China Daily's Kelly Chung Dawson, the book "overlays Sun Tzu's text against a revenge story set 20 years in the future, in an imagined time in which Wall Street has become militarized and China is the dominant global superpower.
Instagram can eat its heart out. As seen on Will Schofield’s 50 Watts, the pictures here, inspired by Lu Xun, are graphic designs from the 1920s and 1930s, a particularly fertile time for creative expression. They’re from the book Chinese Graphic Design in the Twentieth Century, by Scott Minick and Jiao Ping. As described on Amazon: Beginning with... Read more »