Anyone who hangs around me even a little has heard me say, in response to almost any question about China, “It’s complicated.” This picture that I took outside the Haidian Church in Beijing last week illustrates my point. It’s got everything…. Chinese national flag Neon sign Giant Cross Political banner next to the church Surveillance […]
An Olympic Flight Path
It’s a long story, but I’m in Beijing for a short visit. The inbound flight path from Detroit to Beijing yesterday took us over the mountains to the northwest of the city, where the alpine events of the Winter Olympics will be held in 2022. They’re getting ready!
Movie Review: The Farewell
Shortly after I moved from Changchun to Beijing in 1998, I began studying one on one with a Chinese professor at a local teachers college. On the first day of class he told me, quite matter-of-factly that, since he was not a member of the Chinese Communist Party, we could talk about anything. He wasn’t […]
Be More Chinese!
Over the past year, the Chinese government has ramped up its campaign to “sinicize religion,” — to make it more compatible with both traditional and modern socialist values. In reality, it is a move to re-establish Party-state control over the religious sector, Christianity included. Last month I had the opportunity to co-author an article at […]
With Easter just around the corner, stores and shops are filling up with Easter trinkets — bunnies, baskets, and all manner of spring-themed items. And of course, they mostly come from China; in fact, the mostly come from one city in China — the city of Yiwu. Last month the Los Angeles Times did a story […]
A Minneapolis Smile
This is a great story from the BBC about a kid from Minneapolis who has become an internet sensation in China — primarily because of his cute smile. On a recent visit to the country he was treated like a rock star! Image credit: MPR