From imitation to innovation: How China became a tech superpower (February 13, 2018, Wired)
In China, change comes so quickly that the future can arrive before the past is fully stripped away. The evolving technology dynamic between China and the west will probably involve a mix of envy, competition – and perhaps confrontation
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Overseas NGO Law
Registered Foreign NGO Representative Offices Interactive Map and Filterable Table (February 9, 2018, The China NGO Project)
The following interactive graphics display information about foreign NGOs’ representative offices in China as provided by the Ministry of Public Security website.
Government / Politics / Foreign Affairs
Chinese Civil Society in 2018: What’s Ahead?: A ChinaFile Presents Transcript (February 2, 2018, China File)
Wang Yongmei, Anthony Saich, and Jessica Batke at the event “Chinese Civil Society in 2018: What’s Ahead?” which took place at Asia Society in New York on January 29, 2018 and was jointly hosted by ChinaFile and the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.
Foreign passport no amulet in China: Global Times (February 7, 2018, Reuters)
Western countries should educate naturalized citizens that their new passport is no “amulet” in China, a hawkish Chinese newspaper said on Thursday, suggesting that detained Swedish citizen Gui Minhai may have thought his foreign passport could shield him from Chinese law.
China's Xi stresses military modernization in pre-new year visit (February 12, 2018, Reuters)
Xi has made the upgrading of China’s armed forces a key policy plank, investing in a range of new technologies including stealth fighters, aircraft carriers and missiles.
Xi Jinping and the Resurrection of the Middle Kingdom (February 12, 2018, China Policy Institute)
“Fenfa youwei,” in conjunction with Xi’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)—the plan, announced in September 2013 and now part of the party constitution, that seeks to connect Asia with Africa and Europe, shifting the tectonic plates of the global order—has changed China’s disposition.
China’s grand strategy in a new era (February 12, IAPS Dialogue)
However, by announcing that China has entered a new era, Xi Jinping put the official stamp on the changes in Chinese policies that have emerged after the global financial crisis; of China pursuing a foreign policy more in line with China’s new position as a great power.
'You are our lucky star': Chinese media in overdrive on Xi Jinping's New Year tour (February 13, 2018, The Guardian)
Xi Jinping has flown into one of rural China’s most deprived corners to champion his war on extreme poverty before the country’s week-long Lunar New Year holiday. China’s leader toured the adobe shacks of Sanhe and Huopu, two hardscrabble high-altitude farming villages, during a visit to Liangshan Yi Autonomous Prefecture in the south-western province of Sichuan.
Mobilizing for the “China Solution” (February 13, 2018, China Media Project)
In China, the “movement method,” which, as Sun notes, marks a form of governance distinct from that of systems based on rule of law, can be seen in everything from the eviction of migrants in Beijing back in November, to the recent declaration of a “sweep the black” campaign against organized crime, to the official response to an isolated knife attack in a Beijing shopping mall last week.
China's former chief of internet regulator expelled from Communist Party (February 13, 2018, Reuters)
The former head of China’s powerful internet regulator has been expelled from the ruling Communist Party for corruption and will be prosecuted, the party’s anti-graft watchdog said on Tuesday.
What can a rising China do to get accepted in the global order? (February 13, 2018, IAPS Dialogue)
In order to reassure the world, China needs to consider changing its strategy to adopt more openness and reciprocity. China should let the world know that the global order will be global in nature, and not a Chinese order.
Life in China’s Asia: What Regional Hegemony Would Look Like (March/April Issue, Foreign Affairs)
For now, the United States remains the dominant power in East Asia, but China is quickly closing the gap. Although an economic crisis or domestic political turmoil could derail China’s rise, if current trends continue, China will before long supplant the United States as the region’s economic, military, and political hegemon.
Photos: Beautiful Chinese Churches in Snow (February 6, 2018, China Christian Daily)
2nd Generation Christian Series: Young Sister Returns to Rural Church from Shanghai (February 6, 2018, China Christian Daily)
A sister who tried her best to leave the countryside and was determined to have a future in the big city all of a sudden abandoned her foreseeable bright future, married a preacher husband and is now serving in a rural church.
China’s new religious regulations: suffering in the shadow of the cross (February 8, 2018, China Partnership Blog)
I have heard more than one Chinese pastor in mainland China exclaim that they do not pray for the suffering and harassment of the church in China to cease; rather, they pray that God would use it to continue to purify the church.
The Vatican seems to be keen for a deal with Beijing (February 8, 2018, PRI)
In China, millions of Catholics go to church every week. And when they do, around half of them are breaking the law.
Catholics Have a Messaging Problem in China (February 9, 2018, The Atlantic)
The Vatican seems desperate to beat Protestantism in the race for Chinese souls. Can it convince the population that it’s not a “cult”?
Catholic Bishop Says He’s Willing to Step Down for Vatican Deal With Beijing (February 11, 2018, The New York Times)
A Chinese Catholic bishop at the center of a dispute between the Vatican and China said on Sunday that he would respect any deal worked out between the two powers. But he cautioned that the Chinese authorities still had a hard time accepting the idea that Catholics should not be completely under their control.
Catholics warn of church schism if Vatican makes a deal with China (February 12, 2018, The Washington Post)
A group of influential Catholics published an open letter Monday to express their shock and disappointment about a report that the Vatican could soon reach a deal with the Chinese government, warning that it could create a schism in the church in China.
Hong Kong Catholics step up opposition to Vatican deal with Beijing (February 12, 2018, Reuters)
More than 200 people crowded into a hall of the St. Bonaventure Church in a residential neighborhood to show their concern over the deal, which Vatican sources have said could be signed in the next few months.
Why the Vatican’s potential deal with China is a good thing (February 12, 2018, America Magazine)
In light of these developments, the new Vatican initiatives on the nomination of bishops and the promise of normalization of the church’s life in China are not new departures, but the outcomes of long trends in the life of the local church and of Vatican-Beijing relations.
Do You Have a Message for Your 18-Year-Old Self? (February 13. 2018, ChinaSource Blog)
To mark the shift of 90s kids into adulthood, people of all ages posted a photo of themselves with a note they wish they could tell that 18-year-old self. In this post, Pastor Chen Fengsheng, an 80s child, shares how God worked dramatically in his life when he was 18 and how he would share that with his 18 year-old self.
China’s Catholics Rue Church’s Slide as Powers Debate Control (February 14, 2018, The New York Times)
Many are less concerned about disputes over the clergy than about a hollowing out of Catholic life in the Chinese countryside. Others say that the outside world’s binary view of Chinese Catholicism — of loyalist underground church members and government flunkies — misses more subtle realities on the ground.
Are China’s Churches Too Much Alike? (February 14, 2018, ChinaSource Blog)
Writing in China Christian Daily, Wang Zhenmin calls homogenization one of the major crises facing China’s church. Surveying urban church life in China today, he laments that the teaching, discussions, programs, and online activities of Christians in China are sorely lacking in diversity.
Society / Life
Life drains from Little Africa as China dream fades for its fortune seekers (February 7, 2018, The Guardian)
Dealmakers from Lagos to Luanda continue to descend but economic shifts and xenophobia causes exodus of African migrants.
The Southernmost Branch of China’s Northeastern Police (February 9, 2018, Sixth Tone)
Harbin authorities set up an outpost on the other side of the country to serve migratory residents in Sanya.
Woman killed, 12 injured in Beijing mall knife attack (February 11, 2018, Reuters)
A woman was killed and 12 other people injured after a man carried out a knife attack in a mall in a busy shopping district in the Chinese capital, Beijing, police said on Sunday.
Beijing Streets to Be Protected by Nearly 1 Million Security Force Following Mall Knife Attack (February 13, 2018, The Beijinger)
The day patrol will primarily consist of citizen volunteer groups throughout the city such as the "Chaoyang Masses," which has doubled in size to 140,000 since last year. Meanwhile, the responsibility after-hours will fall to party cadres, community policing patrol teams, and other community full-time staff.
China’s Securitization Drive in Tibet and Xinjiang (February 14, 2018, China Policy Institute)
By late 2017, Xinjiang has become perhaps the most heavily policed region on the planet, with estimated per capita police counts exceeding the record-setting level of former East Germany just before that nation’s fall in 1989. Simultaneously, it has installed one of the world’s most sophisticated high-tech surveillance systems, and now outspends most Eastern Chinese provinces on information technology investment on a per capita basis. How did this come about?
China’s Dictatorial Parents Won’t Cure Their Kids’ Web Addiction (February 14, 2018, Sixth Tone)
Chinese parents today face a challenge familiar to moms and dads around the world: How can they prevent their children from disrupting their studies by spending too much time on the internet?
Economics / Trade / Business
U.S. slaps anti-dumping duties on Chinese pipe fittings (February 14, 2018, Reuters)
China is hurting U.S. manufacturers of cast iron soil pipe fittings by “dumping” its products on the American market, the Commerce Department said on Wednesday in announcing it will collect cash deposits from importers of the fittings.
Health / Environment
Hong Kong on alert after China confirms world’s first human case of H7N4 bird flu (February 14, 2018, South China Morning Post)
Mainland China has confirmed the world’s first human case of a virulent bird flu strain, prompting Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Protection to issue an alert for the city. The centre said health authorities confirmed this month that a 68-year-old woman in Jiangsu province had been infected with H7N4 avian influenza after developing symptoms on December 25.
Science / Technology
Starstruck (February 10, 2018, The World of Chinese)
In Guiyang, the world’s largest radio telescope is taking astronomy—and the local economy—rapidly into the future.
WeChat Pay Announces "Spring Festival Shake" to Win Hongbao War (February 14, 2018, The Beijinger)
From Feb 14 to 20, WeChat users can use WeChat to pay over RMB 2 (USD 0.3) at the offline sites where WeChat Pay is aligned with. Users have three chances a day to participate in lucky draws to win two kinds of red envelopes: free purchase (免单 miǎn dān) or up to RMB 200 (USD 31.6) in red envelopes (到店红包 dào diàn hóngbāo) that user can use in offline stores using WeChat pay.
History / Culture
War, Hardship, and Separation: Portraits of a Changing China (February 9, 2018, Sixth Tone)
The stories behind old family photos shine a light on the country’s tumultuous 20th century.
The Fading Embers of a Centuries-Old Fireworks Ritual (February 9, 2018, Sixth Tone)
Every year, there were police and officials from the county present during the fireworks show to maintain order. How come in 2016, I suddenly committed a crime?
Travel / Food
Tai Mo Shan: How to tackle Hong Kong's highest peak (February 6, 2018, CNN)
"The first time I saw a sea of clouds over the city atop Tai Mo Shan in April 2012, I was stunned," says Hong Kong photographer Will Cho. Towering over the city at 957 meters (3,140 feet), centrally located Tai Mo Shan is Hong Kong's highest peak.
Traveling to Shaoxing: a visit to the city of Lu Xun (February 9, 2018, Sapore di Cina)
However since the last century its fame has increased, besides being the birthplace of Lu Xun, the most famous Chinese writer of the twentieth century, as well as one of the most important Chinese politicians in the last century: Zhou Enlai.
How bullet trains are transforming China’s Lunar New Year travel rush (February 12, 2018, South China Morning Post)
While the advent of cut-price flights has dimmed the appeal of rail travel in other parts of the world, in China it is on the rise. Last Spring Festival saw a record 10.96 million trips on one day, and for the first time more people took bullet trains than conventional ones, according to official data.
KFC launches historical themed restaurants in 18 Chinese cities (February 14, 2018, South China Morning Post)
US fast food restaurant chain KFC is displaying images and interactive content of historical artefacts and traditional Chinese culture in restaurants across 18 cities in China. The National Museum of China has granted the firm intellectual property rights to create themed restaurants based in the cities where the items were unearthed, Xinhua reported.
Knock-off Drinks Flood Market at Spring Festival (February 14, 2018, Sixth Tone)
Knock-off soft drinks, the report says, have turned into a lucrative business for their makers, especially during Spring Festival, when they can rake in millions in sales. In places such as Beijing’s Xinfadi wholesale market, truckloads of duplicate beverages await delivery to the small kiosks that dot the capital’s suburban areas, as well as villages across the country.
Sports / Entertainment / Media
Building a Better Winter Dream: Beijing 2022 & the International Olympic Committee (February 9, 2018, China Policy Institute)
China is poised to become a central actor in the future of the Olympic Movement. Chinese audiences, businesses and strategic global investments have the potential to fuel a more robust future for the Winter Olympics and the IOC.
OlymPicks: Top Chinese Athletes to Watch at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Games (February 9, 2018, The Beijinger)
As the Winter Olympics heat up in PyeongChang (the opening ceremony is slated for 9pm tonight), Beijing's sports fans will have plenty of their own rising stars to cheer on.
Why expats love community — and struggle to find it again (November 25, 2018, The Culture Blend)
Expat community rises and falls on two key ingredients. PROXIMITY and NEED. Let me put it a different way. Community happens when incompetent people get mashed together.
Video: Shanghai Faithful: Betrayal and Forgiveness in a Chinese Christian Family (January 24, 2018, National Committee on US-China Relations)
Jennifer Lin discusses her new book and Christianity in China.
The Growth of Chinese Children’s Books (January 26, 2018, Publisher’s Weekly)
U.S. publishers cross borders to import more children’s books from China, as Chinese publishers create contemporary stories.
"One Gospel for All Nations": A Book Review (February 9, 2018, ChinaSource Blog)
In One Gospel for All Nations: A Practical Approach to Biblical Contextualization, Wu does not write “about contextualization” so much as answer, “Practically, how do we contextualize the gospel?”
Interview with Dr. Li Ma 01-22-2018 (Perdue University)
his is an interview with Dr. Li Ma, a senior research fellow at the Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics at Calvin College, about her new book Surviving the State, Remaking the Church: A Sociological Portrait of Christians in Mainland China.
Links for Researchers
Charles Gutzlaff (Karl Friedrich August Gutzlaff) (1803 ~ 1851) (Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity)
Much maligned in his own time and later, he left a mixed legacy that includes the formation and fundamental principles of the China Inland Mission under J. Hudson Taylor and the implication of foreign missionaries in Western imperialism.
Limiting Chinese Aggression: A Strategy of Counter-Pressure (February 9, 2018, The American Interest)
Five strategic fallacies are causing us to overlook a range of options for deterring Beijing.
Listen up: 8 brilliant podcasts about China (February 14, 2018, Time Out Beijing)
Image credit: VR Man, by CommScope, via Flickr
Joann Pittman is senior vice president of ChinaSource and editor of ZGBriefs. Prior to joining ChinaSource, Joann spent 28 years working in China, as an English teacher, language student, program director, and cross-cultural trainer for organizations and businesses engaged in China. She has also taught Chinese at the University... View Full Bio