Early in 2013, as Xi Jinping prepared to take over leadership of China, some high-profile Western analysts were cautiously optimistic about where the country was heading. But far from bringing a longed-for “easing” of controls on expression and civil society activities, the Year of the Snake often saw the ratcheting up of mechanisms of control and intimidation. As we move into the Year of the Horse, Jeffrey Wasserstrom brings together four legal experts to discuss.
What exactly did the recent Third Plenum reveal about Xi Jinping’s strategy for dealing with the big issues facing China in the nine years left in his time heading the Chinese Communist Party? Initially, the consensus seemed to be that …
One Chinese subject that even those Dissent readers with no special interest in China know a good deal about is Beijing’s obsession with controlling information. Given the news coverage of the topic they’ve encountered over the years, few were likely to have been …
Many supporters of the Tiananmen movement hoped that the regime would reassess the protests of 1989. A similar set of 1976 demonstrations were initially dubbed “counterrevolutionary riots” but then reassessed as a “patriotic” struggle. But the situation relating to the June 4 Massacre is very different.
The last year has seen a dramatic uptick in press coverage of Chinese environmental issues. There have also been a number of books published on the subject, with more due out soon. So this seemed a good moment to get in touch with Ralph Litzinger, an anthropologist based at Duke University.
Jeffrey Wasserstrom introduces a special section on China in the Spring 2013 issue: “Wherever this protean country moves next, it will be taken there not just by people whose names are widely known but by those whose dreams, desires, aspirations, and actions make up China’s 99 percent.”
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