Monday, September 28, 2009

GDYE 9/27

Quick Links, Grouped. More in depth on all of these eventually.

1. Visual Arts.
MOCA (The Museum of Chinese in America) had a grand opening earlier this month. The space - designed by Maya Lin - looks beautiful, though the opening exhibit seems to have garnered mixed receptions. I sympathize with the reviewer in the NYT:
"But the first-person stories here suggest that the dominant identity model has its own form of exaggeration, heightening trauma and minimizing promise. The hope is that over time this will be amended (and not just in this museum) with a fuller understanding of both sides of a hyphenated identity."
But the sentiment under-girding it is a much broader one - that Asian-American identity doesn't fit into the standard civil rights discourse... or its genre . "The dominant identity model" in this case must refer to the Af-Am model (yes, no?), and in many ways, the notion that the form "heightens trauma" is a elliptical way of hinting that there is not comparable trauma in the Asian context, or, that is is now erased because there are not comparable issues of endemic poverty, etc.

On another note, Wallpaper* and cognac house Courvorsier bumped heads to create a listing of peeps capturing the essence of the 21st century. Of note and new to me on there were architect Pei Zhu and photographer Li Wei.

2. Thuggery
A recent bust releasing five sex slaves in Changning revealed again the links between organized crime, prostitution, and kidnappings. Kerry Brown at OpenDemocracy spent a month traveling in rural areas of China, and fears that in many districts, local government has become hostage to the "hidden sector" of organized crime.

3. Lettres.
Via Paper Republic, Penguin is sponsoring a Lu Xun Translation Contest! Fears of 2046 begin - China attempts to bar publication of a book, Chinese History Revisted, in Hong Kong. The Guardian reports. Bao Pu, head of the Press - and also lead editor of the Zhao Ziyang papers (Prisoner of the State) that recently came out - ignored the suggestions and pushes forth today.

Sadder news: The Far East Economic Review is being wiped out into the fold of the WSJ as Dow Jones "reorganizes." And Time's China Blog is folding as well, though they've begun a Detroit blog to make up for it.

On good news, Evan Osnos reports via Guangzhou newspaper Southern Weekend of the awe of some Chinese denizens that fact-checking still exists in some venues, though ever rarer. See “I WAS FACT-CHECKED BY THE NEW YORKER.”

4. Migrant Workers
A film debuted at the New York Film Festival yesterday - Ghost Town - chronicling the lives of migrants from one small city in Yunnan. Trailer here.

In a New York Times piece on the film, director Zhao Dayong said:
Mr. Zhao, 39, said getting the approval of the censors was never a consideration. “It’s like asking to be raped,” he said this month in an interview here. “The government certainly has its own agenda. They want us to stop. But at the same time we know we’re doing something meaningful.”
See also Howard French's photos, and the Global Post's excellent web-portal (I know no other word for this.)

5. Human Flesh Engine Search Documentary.
I haven't opened it yet, but it seems worth it. As described by an old Forbes article, for explanation of this new form of frontier justice:
"A human flesh search engine is where thousands of volunteer cybervigilantes unite to expose the personal details of perceived evildoers and publish them on the Web"
6. Fashion Week
Pick up the new "Trand" - Warren Buffet's loving a new menswear brand from China. Yes. Called Trand. I don't think this detail made it into Ralph Nader's new utopian novel, starring in part the Oracle from Omaha.

And Louis Vuitton makes chopsticks now. Nice!

7. Intellectual History
The Global Times charted "60 foreigners who shaped China's 60 years" - I thought this list would be more revealing, but a lot lies between Isaac Newton (1) and Michael Jordan (60).

This beautiful feature allows you to scroll through the covers over 60 years the mag China Pictoral. Really, really amazing.

Lastly, Warcraft is back online in China after a temporary ban - more than half of that social imaginary is populated by PRCers, it appears. Also, in my browsing I came across an wild consulting company - CHINA YOUTHOLOGY. Friends at McKinsey take note.

No comments:

Post a Comment